Cyber Monday will soon be the biggest shopping day of the year, predicts e-commerce expert Ant Ozok

When Cyber Monday was created in 2005, retailers wanted to target workers who were in their offices, in front of computers, and possibly “could be enticed by a few special deals,” explains Ant Ozok, associate professor of information systems, in Newsweek. According to Ozok, Cyber Monday has changed as consumers’ shopping methods have evolved, and it is poised to keep growing.

“[Cyber Monday] is no longer a day where shoppers look for electronics only or deals they missed during Black Friday,” he says. “Now Cyber Monday is a broad shopping experience spanning every product category imaginable.”

In 2015, about half of all product browsing on Cyber Monday came from mobile users, and nearly one third of items were purchased using a mobile phone or tablet, but the future popularity of e-commerce was not guaranteed in its earliest days. “Early researchers did not view mobile commerce as a replacement of computer-based e-commerce, but rather as a convenience tool for on-the-go purchases like concert tickets, and to carry electronic coupon codes rather than printing them for use at brick-and-mortar stores,” Ozok explains.

Smartphones have quickly become many Americans’ primary web surfing device, he says, adding that some retailers report that more sales are being made using mobile devices than using desktop and laptop computers combined. “We were proved wrong when the smartphone brought together a fully-functional computer and a high-resolution camera, along with touch-screen controls allowing zooming in on images,” Ozok says.

He anticipates that Cyber Monday will soon become the biggest shopping day of the year, adding that that growth will rely on Americans’ increasing use of mobile devices to purchase items on the go.

“It would be difficult to imagine Cyber Monday getting this big if not for the increased availability of mobile technologies,” he said. “Until only a few years ago, the year-to-year growth of mobile commerce was just incremental.”

Read the full article “Cyber Monday gives a big boost to mobile commerce,” in The Conversation. The article also appeared in Newsweek, SF Gate, and the Houston Chronicle.