Are Black Friday and Cyber Monday Still Relevant?

As Black Friday and Cyber Monday transcend their traditional dates after Thanksgiving, sellers may wonder whether the two dates are still relevant.

Black Friday and Cyber Monday no longer occur only on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Retailers of all sizes now stretch their sales for days and weeks before and after the dates.

Increasingly, the sales period between Thanksgiving, Black Friday, the following weekend, and Cyber Monday is being referred to as ‘Cyber 5’—the five days between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday—or ‘Cyber Week’ (though this can also refer to the week of Black Friday).

The origin of Black Friday is intrinsically tied to Thanksgiving. After Thanksgiving, retailers clear out their old stock at discounted prices to free space for holiday season stock, often making a handsome profit in the process.

However, outside the US and Canada, where Black Friday and Cyber Monday have also spread, there is little reason for pre-holiday season sales to be tied to a specific date as there is no Thanksgiving.

That aside, even US businesses are getting looser and looser with their definition of Black Friday.

These days, it’s not too surprising to find Black Friday promotions occurring in November, weeks before Thanksgiving. Some retailers even practice a ‘Black November,’ holding sales throughout the month.

With the holiday season shopping starting earlier and earlier as retailers try to get ahead of each other with sales, it feels like there is no beginning or end to Black Friday deals. 

Walmart started its Black Friday sales on November 8th, more than two weeks before the traditional date, and Amazon started its Black Friday sales on November 17th, one week before the date. 

There are even Black Friday sales in July (‘Black Friday in July’), which typically refers to Amazon’s Prime Day sales in July.

Furthermore, as Prime Day outgrows Amazon, other retailers and marketplaces hold events around them, further exacerbating the sense that Black Friday never ends.

So, has the term ‘Black Friday’ lost its meaning? No, not just yet. Black Friday and Cyber Monday are still two of the most significant sales events of the year and excellent opportunities for merchants to boost sales.

According to a media alert from Adobe Analytics, Cyber Monday sales grew “9.6% year-over-year (YoY) to $12.4 billion” in 2023, and Black Friday “$9.8 billion, up 7.5% YoY.”

Both are significant increases and show that shoppers still consider these dates the most important for Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.

What does this all mean for sellers? It means sellers must be more reactive to new sales opportunities and adapt to longer Black Friday sales periods to make the most of it.

Whether you’re preparing for Black Friday, the holiday season, or any other sales event, Sellercloud and its family of tools and products can help sellers extend the reach of their catalog and enhance their fulfillment workflows.