What, you’ve never heard of Green Monday? It takes place on the second Monday of December—December 10 in 2012. And regardless of whether you were aware of this day’s “greenness,” it’s very likely to be quite a big day for e-commerce.
It’s understandable that you didn’t know today was Green Monday. There are many other holiday shopping days with higher profiles, including Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Free Shipping Day, Small Business Saturday, and even Super Saturday probably have more name recognition than Green Monday. It doesn’t help that the environmentally-themed Green Tuesday has been thrown into the mix. Adding to the confusion: The day after Cyber Monday has been branded not only as Green Tuesday but Giving Tuesday (a day devoted to charitable giving) as well.
Things are getting to the point that from late November through the end of December, nearly every day is some sort of “official” shopping day. (FYI, this year’s National Regifting Day is coming up soon: Thursday, December 20.)
Unlike Black Friday and Cyber Monday, few retailers have been making a big deal in anticipation of Green Monday. There have been no “pre-Green Monday” sales like there were ahead of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Walmart was one of the few big players to issue details in advance of a Green Monday sale, an online-only day of deals including 50-inch HDTVs for under $399 and assorted merchandise marked down by 50% of more. Surely, more stores and sites will be jumping on the Green Monday bandwagon—rarely is any opportunity to engage shoppers ever turned down—but for the most part, “Green Monday” comes up short in terms of capturing the imaginations of retailers and consumers alike.
Nonetheless, Monday, December 10, will probably be a big day for online shopping regardless. How come? For one thing, e-commerce is traditionally strong on Mondays, at least partially because consumers spend relatively little time in front of screens over the weekend. By the time Monday rolls around, they’re back in the office staring at a computer screen and they’re looking for ways to ease into the work week. They’re ready to spend. This is especially the case when the time of year calls for spending, as when Christmas is rapidly approaching.
The day was dubbed “Green Monday” in 2007 because, back then, before Cyber Monday became a monster day for online sales, the second Monday in December was the season’s biggest day for e-commerce. So, originally, “Green” represented money. A comScore report from five years ago reveals that Green Monday beat out Cyber Monday for online sales, $880 million to $730 million. Black Friday and Cyber Monday, as well as the Tuesday and Wednesday that followed, all surpassed the $1 billion mark, according to comScore.
Even though Green Monday no longer holds the title for generating the most green in terms of online sales, in all likelihood, Green Monday will also cross the $1 billion threshold. In 2011, Green Monday did $1.13 billion in online sales, and Adobe Digital Marketing predicted an increase of 7% for Green Monday 2012.
According to the International Business Times, FedEx expects that Green Monday will be the company’s busiest day for shipping in the entire year:
An estimated 19 million packages will be in the Memphis, Tenn.-based delivery company’s logistics chain, up from 17.2 million on the second Monday of December last year. That’s because this week is the peak for online shopping before the bell curve begins its downward slope.
So, look for Green Monday to be a big—if not the biggest—day for online shopping. That goes whether shoppers are aware that the day is being called “Green Monday” or not.