November 28, 2006 4:00 AM PST
Cyber Monday, you're no Black Friday
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Some online stores, including Bestbuy.com, Staples.com and Circuitcity.com were running promotions and cutting prices on Monday.
Among traditional retailers, early reports indicate that big ticket items are selling well. After predicting that the crush of Black Friday shoppers would line up early for good deals on flat-panel televisions, notebook computers and digital cameras, analyst Stephen Baker of The NPD Group showed up to observe the busiest shopping day of the year firsthand.
"The crowds were definitely looking for flat-panel, notebook and desktop deals," he said Monday. "Those things, every store I was in, was sold out of the big screens and desktops as soon as they opened."
He said he found it a little surprising that customers bypassed smaller-size LCD TVs despite attractive pricing.
"Stuff in smaller boxes tends to be harder to see," he said. "From what I could hear and see, everybody seemed to be purchasing pretty much everything. There's a progression--big, more expensive stuff tends to sell out immediately, and there's a progression down to the smaller things. People are focused on saving the most amount of money they can, and the big ticket items tend to get the most amount of interest."
Though the Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii and Sony PlayStation 3 are some of the most sought-after electronics this season, most customers seemed aware that their chances of scoring a next-generation game console were nonexistent. "That's not the kind of thing you wait outside for on Black Friday," Baker said. "It's not about hot products, it's stuff that's going to have the low prices."Reuters reported that from November 17 to November 24, 14,675 PS3s changed hands on eBay for an average price of $1,186.63. The Wii has sold 26,708 times from November 19 to November 24 on the auction site. The average price for the Wii was $412.
What's unclear, however, is if more Wiis and PS3s sold on eBay on Cyber Monday than on any other day of the year. Probably not.
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