Cyber Monday kicks off
According to the National Retail Federation’s Cyber Monday Expectations Survey conducted by Prosper Insights & Analytics over the weekend, 126.9 million (52.3%) shoppers plan to shop online on Cyber Monday, down slightly from the 131.6 million who planned to participate last year.
“For today’s shopper, every day is ‘Cyber Monday,’ and consumers want and expect great deals, especially online, throughout the entire holiday season – and they know retailers will deliver,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “Retailers will still offer unique deals exclusive to Cyber Monday, but consumers also know shopping on Cyber Monday won’t be their last chance to find low prices and exclusive promotions.”
When asked how they plan to shop on Cyber Monday, 24.5 million (19.3%) said they will use their mobile device, and eight in 10 (84.5%) will use their home computers to shop online. Mobile retailing remains important as consumers increasingly rely on their smartphones and tablets to research and purchase products. And, retailers are eager to meet consumer demand from these savvy customers as nearly seven in 10 (69.1%) retailers polled in Shop.org’s July eHoliday survey said they invested in optimizing their mobile websites prior to the holiday season, up from the 57.4 percent who said so last year.
Additionally, the latest Shop.org’s eHoliday survey found that 97.6 percent of online retailers polled say they will offer specific Cyber Monday deals.
“Retailers are taking on the growing demand of online shopping and doing what it takes to compete on every level, including mobile optimization of their websites and unique in-store experiences that marry the two channels more than ever before,” said NRF Senior Vice President and Shop.org Executive Director Vicki Cantrell. “Retailers have made the online shopping experience even more compelling this year by offering free shipping deals, low prices and enhanced buy online, pick up in-store programs.”
As for when they’ll shop, 40.8 percent of shoppers will be up bright and early on Cyber Monday to take advantage of the early morning deals. Others will shop over their lunch hour (18.4%) or early afternoon (32.5%).
Whirlpool dryer earns Energy Star award
The Environmental Protection Agency has recognized Whirlpool’s HybridCare Heat Pump Duet Dryer with a 2014 Energy Star Emerging Technology Award, which is granted to products that advance the causes of energy efficiency and emission reduction while maintaining high standards of functionality.
The HybridCare dryer works by regenerating energy during the drying cycle. Rather than venting the air like most dryers, the HybridCare uses a refrigeration system to dry and recycle the air. This leads to more than the 40% in energy savings required by Emerging Technology Award standards.
"We’re honored that the EPA recognizes Whirlpool Corporation’s commitment to sustainability and energy efficiency with our innovative HybridCare heat pump dryer technology," said Chris Ball, general manager of the Laundry category for Whirlpool North America. "Among the many benefits of this dryer is that it does not require an outside vent, which gives consumers more options for where to install it in the home."
Whirlpool also laid claim to the first Energy Star certified dryer in June — the Duet model WED87HED steam dryer. It then earned the Energy Star stamp of approval for its entire front load electric dryer line.
Sears Canada honors military families
Sears Canada will be tipping its hat to military families this season at select store locations.
As part of its 9th annual Operation Wish program, Sears will be inviting customers to sign a postcard for troops and their families now through Dec. 7.
"Since 2006, Sears Canada has honored and recognized the often selfless contribution military and their families make to this community and our country," said Anne Conseiller, store manager, Sears Place Laurier. "Over the years, we have done many different things, such as encouraging our customers to sign large banners and Holiday cards with well-wishes, which we sent to deployed troops who were away from home over the Holidays. The goal is always the same, to bring those serving and their families closer together at Christmastime."
Sears will also be donating $10,000 to local Military Family Resource Centers to support their youth programs, in addition to a percentage of funds raised through sales of its limited edition bear, Finn.
The postcards will be collected at Sears stores in Quebec, Halifax, Belleville, Winnipeg, Victoria and other locations located near military bases.
The postcards will be displayed at the customer service desks this week, and then delivered to nearby military bases.
Finally, Sears will observe Dec. 7 as Military Family Shopping Day. Active Canadian military personnel, their families and veterans will get a 15% discount on most items sold at Sears, Sears Home and Sears Hometown stores.