There hasn’t been as much hype surrounding Cyber Monday this year as more consumers are using computers and mobile devices to shop whenever they please.

No longer waiting to return to work on the Monday after Thanksgiving to surf Web deals, consumers armed with tablets and smartphones are ordering online over a longer stretch, data from ComScore Inc. show.

That’s spurring e-commerce heavyweights such as and eBay to grapple with retailers including Macy’s Inc. and Sears Holdings Corp. in using online promotions and mobile applications to lure tech-savvy gift buyers long before and after Cyber Monday.

As more purchasing happens over the Web, e-commerce will keep outstripping shopping in brick-and-mortar stores. Online holiday sales will increase as much as 15 percent to $82 billion, more than three times faster than the total gain of 3.9 percent to $602.1 billion, according to the National Retail Federation.

“It now becomes more of a bell curve, where things start much sooner and end later,” said Steve Yankovich, vice president of innovation and new ventures at eBay, which is adding features to its mobile app that tailor the shopping experience for individual users. “It’s more fuzzy because we can shop so many more ways and have products fulfilled in more ways.”

Evidence of an extended online buying period emerged last year, especially on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day, as consumers browsed online offers between post-turkey naps.

Growth in spending on those days rose — up 32 percent on Thanksgiving versus 18 percent in 2011 — while the pace of Cyber Monday sales growth slowed to 17 percent last year, compared with 22 percent the year prior, according to ComScore.

Today, one third of average monthly traffic for leading retailers — like Amazon, eBay, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Target Corp. — is from smartphones and tablets, according to ComScore. As a result, the stores are offering more holiday deals that can reach consumers whenever they’re plugged into those devices.

The holiday season is crucial for companies such as Amazon, the world’s largest online retailer, which depends on gifters to fuel its biggest-revenue quarter. The company is projected to gross 35 percent of its 2013 sales in the last three months of the year, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

While deals started earlier, Cyber Monday will still be one of the season’s biggest online shopping days and some area residents plan to cash in on the savings.

“Cyber Monday has better deals and no crowds,” Copperas Cove resident Herve Abrams said on Facebook.

In early November, Abode Digital Index said Black Friday online sales would grow by about 17 percent, to $1.63 billion, but Cyber Monday sales would reach $2.27 billion — a record-setter for the day.

Cyber Monday is just convenient said Chrystal Mullican on Facebook. “I can take my time and compare items/prices.”

Herald business editor Mason W. Canales and the Washington Post contributed to this report.

(1) comment


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