Online deals abound on Cyber Monday

Local shoppers again will see great deals today, but not necessarily at retail stores.

The online sibling of Black Friday, Cyber Monday has been growing steadily since its inception in 2005, and is becoming a bigger part of the holiday shopping season.

Other than the online platform, Rob Woods, director of marketing for blackfriday.com, said the biggest difference is that the deals aren’t generally publicized beforehand for Cyber Monday. Customers just have to surf the Internet the day of to find what items will be discounted. He said the big doorbusters and blowout sales are found on Black Friday, with the next Monday provides more broad discounts.

But with the online shopping holiday gaining steam, Woods expects it to continue to grow.

“I don’t think it’s going anywhere,” he said.”The sales continue to grow year after year.”

Cyber Monday this year is expected to set sales record for the third year in a row. American shoppers are expected to spend $1.5 billion online today, according to www. comscorecom, a digital business tracking website. That’s up from $1.25 billion spent last year.

Nittany Mall General Manager Lou Kanzleiter said the growth of the online sales industry in general is something that storefronts are taking note of and using to their advantage.

He said many stores have been able to create strong online presences and sell a strong portion of their items on the electronic platform.

“The retail industry is recognizing that internet sales are increasing each year,” he said. However, he added, “There has been a marriage between internet sales and the brick and mortar business.”