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A Brief History of Black Friday & Cyber Monday

Holiday shoppers look forward to Black Friday and Cyber Monday every year to get their holiday shopping done and save big. But what is the history of these days? Let's take a peek!

Black Friday Cyber Monday

Black Friday and Cyber Monday have become a couple of the biggest sale days of the year. Shoppers get a large portion of their gift shopping during these days while saving a good deal of money. Stores, on the other hand, are able to move a lot of inventory with flash sales, limited-time discounts, and the impulsive purchases people make while out shopping for their loved ones. So, where did this idea of Black Friday and Cyber Monday come from?

Black Friday

Though Black Friday may have started first with a negative connotation tied to a financial crisis in the mid-1800s, and second, the riots and chaos that surrounded the annual Army-Navy football game in Philadelphia, the sensationalized narrative that was spun in the 1980s is the official background that we tell today. Most of us remember the story of Black Friday that stores would spend all year operating in the red, meaning they were not making any profits, until the day after Thanksgiving when everyone would essentially binge-shop and swing businesses into the black, finally making them profitable. This story may not be completely factual, but it is a cheerful version that helps shoppers feel like they are making a difference while taking care of that holiday gift shopping list.

Cyber Monday

For years, Black Friday continued on alone in its goal to provide discounted prices for shoppers and fill the coffers of businesses. That is, until 2005 when Cyber Monday was born. What began as a marketing term for the high volume of sales that happened online the Monday after Thanksgiving. At the time, there were no special sales or deals. It was believed that parents were taking the opportunity to use their work computers, and the company's faster internet as well as the remoteness from their childrens' prying eyes, to do some of their shopping. The term was coined by the president of the National Retail Federation.

Each year, Cyber Monday grew just a little more until 2008 when the competition between Walmart and Amazon came to a head with Amazon beating out Walmart for the first time. The following year, in an attempt to surpass Amazon, Walmart turned Cyber Monday into Cyber Week with a full week of specials for shoppers. 2010, most stores followed Walmart's lead and broke out of the one-day sale box. In 2011, Black Frida and Cyber Monday essentially merged into a weekend-long sale with stores sharing their deepest discounts during those 4 days. The sales would continue through Cyber Week with special changing daily. Over the past 15 years, Cyber Monday sales have grown from $484 million to $9.81 billion. That's a whole lot of holiday gifts.

This year, at CoffeeAM, we're continuing our Cyber Monday deals with up to 50% savings on coffees, teas, and gift sets your loved ones will enjoy sip after sip. Happy holidays!

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