Cyber Monday shoppers click their way to record

Filed under: Retail |

Cyber Monday Internet traffic hit an all -time high on the Monday after Thanksgiving. According to industry tracker comScore Networks the Web sites had a 26 percent gain in sales, reaching $608 million, compared to the same day in 2005.

Growth outpaced the 3.4 percent year-over-year sales gains on Black Friday and the slight drop in sales the following day.

Cyber Monday commerce brought online retail sales totals to $9.5 billion for the first 27 days of November, a 24 percent gain compared to the same period last year.

All together, Cyber Monday Internet traffic was 13.3 percent higher than it was a year ago, according to Hitwise, a tracker of Web activity.

Amazon.com was the most popular site, scoring slightly more than 12 percent of the day’s retail market share.

Wal-Mart, Target, Circuit City, Best Buy and J.C. Penney all finished in the top 10, with at least 3 percent market share.

Continued traffic on the National Retail Federation’s CyberMonday.com gave the creators an incentive to keep it running.

Since its launch on Nov. 20, the site has been visited by more than 500,000 consumers, according to Mall Networks, which powers the Web site.

“The amount of interest in CyberMonday.com was unlike anything we have ever experienced in affiliate marketing for a brand new Web site,” said Kimathi Marangu, executive vice president of business development. “More than $2 million of transactions were processed through CyberMonday.com on Cyber Monday alone and interest remains strong as we continue to update the site with participation by even more leading retailers, free shipping offers and new money-saving deals. Clearly, the numbers prove that savvy online shoppers are taking advantage of this resource and spreading the word.”

CyberMonday.com was launched to raise money for a scholarship fund in memory of former Shop.org Vice President Ray Greenly.

More than $75,000 has been raised, and will help students pursuing careers in eCommerce.

According to comScore Media Metrix, a company that tracks Internet activity, CyberMonday.com had more than 300,000 visitors on Cyber Monday.

The site was so busy that server capacity was tripled to accommodate the peak load.

Alexa Internet also listed CyberMonday.com No. 10 in its weekly ranking of online movers and shakers.

Couture makes short move

Moving five doors down and around the corner, Shannon Dougherty, owner of Couture, seems pleased with her new space, which she opened three weeks ago.

Located on the street-level of the new Giddings Lofts at 101 N .Tejon St., Suite 102, the new Couture is 500 square feet bigger and easier to find, she said.

“It was a long time coming,” Dougherty said. “My lease was up on the other place, I’d wanted a spot on Tejon and I needed more room — so it was just the right solution.”

With the extra space, Dougherty has added a few art displays, a children’s section and more lingerie.

Tejon Tan fills niche

Tejon Tan also has set up shop in the Giddings Loft building — in Suite 110.

Owner Holli Showalter said that some people are a bit confused, because the storefront is actually on Kiowa Street.

“Being in a business district hopefully people are interested in taking a nice cat nap — in a tanning bed,” she said.

Her office is an exclusive studio for Fantasy Tan, which started the spray tanning concept, education and manufacturing of its equipment and products in 1997.

Showalter’s store includes 10 rooms and also offers cosmetic products.

B&B new location

Backyards and Billiards is opening a second location at 5860 Barnes Road.

The retailer first opened its doors in late 1995 at 3850 Sinton Road. Greg and Nancy Bennett purchased the business on June 16, 2004.

They sell spas, saunas, billiard tables, foosball and air hockey tables, gazebos, firepots, patio furniture, bar stools, tanning beds, umbrellas and accessories.

Luxury taking lead in chain store sales

Chain store sales rose by 2.1 percent in November, according to the International Council of Shopping Center’s index. As during the past few months, consumers continued to shift their spending to luxury and department stores.

Luxury chain store sales grew 5.1 percent for the month. Department chain stores continued to post healthy results, with a 4.6 percent increase.

Other sectors that posted an increase were wholesale clubs (3.5 percent), discount stores (1 percent), and apparel chain stores (0.2 percent).

“Retailers cited three reasons for the results: tough comparison with hurricane-induced replacement demand in the South, pockets of mild weather that curbed seasonal apparel demand and lower gasoline prices (relative to last year) that cut into wholesale clubs which report gasoline sales,” said Michael Niemira, ICSC’s chief economist and director of research.

Niemira said he expects same-store sales to increase by 2.5 percent to 3 percent, on a year-over-year basis during December. For the holiday season, he expects overall same-store sales to increase by 2.5 percent to 3 percent for November and December combined because of the possibility of some lingering softness in demand in some sectors.

Joan Johnson covers retail for the Colorado Springs Business Journal.