October 26, 2010

By Ofer Tirosh

Cyber Monday vs. Black Friday 2010

On Friday, November 24, millions of shoppers throughout the country will hit the mall as early as 6a.m for Black Friday 2010, and kick off the holiday season with a day of complete insanity. This consumerist tradition not only causes frenzy among shoppers, but among retailers and department stores alike, all who engage in fierce competition to attract the largest crowds with the best deals.

However, Cyber Monday 2010, which is scheduled for Monday, November 27, has also been growing in popularity - especially for homebodies who would much rather avoid the headache of traffic and parking lots jammed packed with cars, frantic housewives fighting over the last Pillow Pet, and Wal-mart lines nine miles long. For techies, introverts, and any others who would rather hurl themselves into a septic tank of electric barbed wire than face an all-day nightmare of Black Friday lunatics - they have Cyber Monday. Why get trampled by stampeding mobs of holiday shoppers on Black Friday, when Cyber Monday 2010 sounds just as promising?

It's hard to say where the best deals for 2010 Black Friday will be, as retailers and department stores are very careful not to release their ads too early, competing to attract consumers with the best deal. However, some stores like Best Buy have had their discount plans for 2010 Black Friday leaked early on several websites. Responses to this have been to send warnings to websites not to post or leak the Black Friday ads into the public.

2010 Cyber Monday retail and ecommerce sites are careful as well, but they have an obvious advantage, due to their primary method of sales already being online. Many media and news sources have noted that the growing popularity and increasing trend toward Cyber Monday, as retail websites and ecommerce deals get better and better each year. That, and, judging by last year in addition to what is still a shaky economy for many, Black Friday 2010's special deals won't be anything that special.

Growing Trend of Globalization and Website Translation for Ecommerce

An enormous advantage that online retailers and ecommerce sites have over brick-and-mortar stores is access to global markets with website translation and localization. As Christmas occurs around the world in England, Ireland, Scotland, and throughout most of Europe, millions will be shopping for holiday gifts online, and ecommerce sites that already have Spanish, French, or Italian translation (and many other languages) have a huge lead in potential profits. This opens up a tremendous market for Cyber Monday ecommerce sites that Black Friday stores can't tap into. More and more ecommerce and retail sites are jumping on the bandwagon of globalization, by means of website translation, localized marketing translation, advertising localization, and other strategic tools. It stands to reason that they also will continue to capitalize on the foreign language and European markets that are accessed through globalization and website translation. If Cyber Monday continually proves to offer better deals, drawing more and more consumers away from the malls and toward their computers, it makes this option even more practical.

So, in 20 or 30 years - give or take a holiday season - could Cyber Monday replace Black Friday altogether? Will holiday shoppers exchange the anxious, nerve-wracking 6a.m. rush to malls, retail outlets and department stores, for a global frenzy of online and ecommerce holiday shopping? It's a little hard to imagine Black Friday as a wild rush to our computer desks, still dressed in our pajamas, sweating over our laptops, and furiously clicking the “add to cart” button, sighing with relief that our item is still in stock. One thing is certain: there will always be consumers and retailers to kick off the holiday season - whether at the usual local retail shops and haunts of Black Friday fever, or, in a worldwide Cyber Monday mania, where globalization and multi-lingual ecommerce translation demands will have them knocking down the doors of our translation company.

It's certainly a nice thought.

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