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Amazon touts ‘record-breaking’ sales in kickoff to holiday shopping season

Packages travel on a conveyor during Cyber Monday at Amazon’s fulfillment center in Robbinsville, New Jersey, on Nov. 27, 2023.

Mike Segar | Reuters

Amazon said Tuesday it rang up “record-breaking” sales in the run-up to Cyber Monday as consumers, still pinched by inflation, sought discounts.

The company said the period from Nov. 17 to Cyber Monday marked its “biggest ever” holiday shopping event compared to the same 11-day stretch last year. Amazon, which did not disclose actual sales figures, added that shoppers worldwide bought more than one billion items during the period.

In recent years, as more shopping has moved online, retailers have started running promotions well in advance of Black Friday, looking to hook early holiday shoppers.

Big sale days such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday no longer have the same significance as they used to, and consumers often spread their holiday shopping over a period of several weeks, rather than just a single day or Thanksgiving weekend.

“We kicked off the holiday season with Prime Big Deal Days in October, and extended our Black Friday and Cyber Monday holiday shopping event to 11 days to accommodate even more deals over more days to make shopping more convenient for customers — helping them save nearly 70% more than the same period last year,” said Doug Herrington, CEO of Worldwide Amazon Stores, in a statement.

Amazon said shoppers gravitated to products such as COSRX Snail Mucin skin care, Fire TV Sticks, Ring doorbells and Bissell vacuum cleaners during Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

U.S. shoppers spent a record $12.4 billion on Cyber Monday, up 9.6% from last year, and trouncing initial expectations for sales of $12 billion, according to data from Adobe Analytics released Tuesday. Online sales during Cyber Week, or the five days between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday, reached $38 billion, surpassing Adobe’s projected $37.2 billion.

Retailers and analysts were cautious heading into this year’s holiday shopping season. While consumers have remained resilient, grocery prices remain high, and the resumption of student loan payments has eaten into some shoppers’ holiday budgets.

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