Why Cyber Monday Should Be Better Than Black Friday

November 30 2009, 9:48 AM

Despite the images of shoppers rushing out before dawn to malls and big-box retailers for Black Friday sales the day after Thanksgiving, a large number of people decided to shop online instead. Web-based purchases on Black Friday were up 11 percent from a year ago, hitting $595 million, a figure that's certain to rise today, Cyber Monday, America's annual troll for one-day-only Internet discounts with perks such as free shipping (via CNN). Some shoppers will risk getting caught shopping at work, which hopefully won't get them fired or lead them to rush and make purchases they regret. 11News in Colorado Springs reminds online shoppers to do business with retailers you know and print or save pages documenting your purchases. The online frenzy isn't great news for every retailer, as 9News notes in a report about how local businesses may fare today. But on the other hand, retailers like Fancy Tiger, a South Broadway boutique that specializes in fabrics and crafts, have their own advantage: unique gifts that stand out because they can't be found anywhere else. Take the stories citing Black Friday and Cyber Monday figures with a grain of salt. As The Wall Street Journal points out, neither day seems to accurately serve as a predictor for the entire retail holiday season. And, as the Los Angeles Times reports, although shoppers are out in droves, they're not necessarily spending: One research firm says Black Friday sales are up by just 0.5 percent.