And sometimes they just make stuff up. (Image from ABC.)
Cyber Monday is something they just made up. (The official site is from a trade group — hint hint.) The idea is that people hit the malls during the weekend, then hit their desks at work and do their real shopping online.
No made-up trend is worth anything without so-called research to back it up, and this one is no exception. Google commissioned Harris Interactive, which found 40% of Americans plan to do some shopping online. The National Retail Foundation commissioned BIGresearch, which found online spending up 19% over the weekend.
But is there anything wrong with Cyber Monday? Actually, there is.
- It actively promotes the idea that people slack off and shop from work.
- This may in turn lead to employers cutting off access to shopping sites, even firing people who are found shopping during company time today.
- Which in turn leads to fired employees suing their former employers or the idiots who thought this up.
Look, I’m all for shopping online. I do it often. I’m going to do it today. But I’m not going to do it on someone else’s clock. I’m going to go home, get in my jammies, find a nice beverage, and then consult my list.
So should you.
Now, if you insist, some places you might like to try out if you are cyber-shopping sometime this week, in or out of your jammies:
- Frucall offers registered users a service where they can call a number with their cell phones while in a store, punch in the UPC code of an item, and get the best online prices for it.
- Like.Com analyzes pictures of celebrity, finds out what bling they’re wearing, then finds it for you when you click on the picture of the celebrity with it on.
- ShopLocal, as the name implies, tells you what’s available near you. Yes, Google Maps does something like this, but ShopLocal has been doing it longer, and they have some cool extra services for those with no clue what to get.
- BidNearby is an eBay mash-up that tells you were eBay sellers are located near you, and what they have available.
A hat tip to Larry Chase (left) of Web Digest For Marketers for these great ideas. Go there and get on his newsletter, right now.