What You Need to Know About Cyber Monday 2021

What You Need to Know About Cyber Monday 2021

After the madness of Black Friday comes the holy grail of online shopping — Cyber Monday. In 2020, a year that barred most people from in-store shopping, Cyber Monday saw almost $10 billion in sales, a 24% increase from 2019. Online shopping over the entire Thanksgiving weekend totaled $22 billion. The Monday after Thanksgiving has become an incredible opportunity for retailers and consumers alike, as product prices drop significantly.

Whether you're looking to snag a new 4K TV or are looking to stock up on holiday gifts, Cyber Monday is a great time to do so without needing to brave the crowds. Before we head into arguably the biggest spending weekend of the year, it helps to know what to expect, especially since 2020 made some big changes to the event.

What Is Cyber Monday?

Cyber Monday occurs on the first Monday after Thanksgiving, but the lines have been blurring between Black Friday and Cyber Monday ever since the latter started in 2005. Back then, the internet was still on the niche side, and Cyber Monday was just a 24-hour event. Now that the internet is an integral part of our daily lives, many Black Friday deals are available online too. That means the whole weekend becomes an extension of Black Friday, and some retailers even just call it Cyber Weekend.

Still, Cyber Monday stands out as its own shopping day. A ComScore report found that, on Cyber Monday, consumers outspent Black Friday by about $2.47 billion last year. Many retailers offer deals that can rival or beat their in-store sales. Even those items that rarely go on sale, such as Apple® products and gift cards, commonly see price drops for this event.

When Is Cyber Monday 2021?

Cyber Monday is on Nov. 29 this year. The day is just one part of the pillar of holiday shopping, where many consumers spend thousands on gifts and personal purchases. This period traditionally starts at the beginning of November, and many sellers will launch their deals at this time. Although you generally won't find deals quite as steep as those on Black Friday, the weeks leading up to it can still introduce good prices.

Prices can change drastically across the week, but be cautious when it comes to waiting for a better deal. Many retailers can only offer their sales while supplies last. Supply chain issues have been common this year, so stock may be low and run out more quickly than usual.

What Time Does Cyber Monday Start?

As for when Cyber Monday starts, the sales traditionally began at 12:01 a.m. the Monday after Thanksgiving. With deals lasting all weekend, though, that time may not be too important.

What to Look For

Although the line has blurred between Cyber Monday and Black Friday, certain items tend to see better prices on one or the other. Cyber Monday typically offers the best deals on moderately priced items, like headphones and phones from the previous year, while Black Friday is the time to buy big-ticket items such as TVs and home appliances.

What to Look For

Some items to look for on Cyber Monday include:

  • Midrange PCs and laptops
  • Travel
  • Audio devices, like headphones and speakers
  • Small kitchen appliances, such as air fryers and coffee makers
  • Digital and online subscriptions
  • Clothing
  • Phones
  • Smart home devices

On Black Friday, keep an eye out for:

  • High-end laptops and PCs
  • TVs
  • Large appliances like refrigerators and dishwashers
  • Game consoles
  • Toys
  • Phones
  • Smart home devices

Note that you can find deep discounts on phones and smart home gadgets on both days. Some of last year's best deals for tech included items like smartwatches, vacuums, gaming consoles, TVs, tablets and headphones. While tech is where you'll find some of the best Cyber Monday deals, you can find many types of products on sale, such as clothing, kitchen appliances, sports equipment and home goods.

Travel is another good pick for Cyber Monday, but if you miss out on it or don't find anything good that day, you can also check back on the lesser-known Travel Tuesday.

Many Cyber Monday sales are carryovers from Black Friday, but you'll also see a lot of new deals. In addition to sale prices, you'll likely find many other types of Cyber Monday deals in 2021. These might include buy-one-get-one (BOGO) offers, free gift cards or free accessories like cables, chargers and headphones. Other perks could entail free shipping or lower minimum purchase requirements. Remember, you can also buy online and pick items up at your leisure in-store.

Lastly, we can expect more demand — and potentially more deals — for items that have become popular in the wake of last year's events. More people have been working from home and spending more time at home overall. We could very well see home office items, like desks and printers, as well as products like home goods and exercise equipment.

Where to Look for Deals

The best place to look is on the websites of the biggest retailers. Most will start dropping their ads in mid-November, but some post them as early as October, often listing the sale items on webpages dedicated to Black Friday or Cyber Monday.

As we approach Thanksgiving, it will be hard to avoid advertisements for the big Cyber Monday deals. Still, it helps to know where to look, especially if you're after a certain item.

The best place to look is on the websites of the biggest retailers. Most will start dropping their ads in mid-November, but some post them as early as October, often listing the sale items on webpages dedicated to Black Friday or Cyber Monday. If you're subscribed to the email lists of these stores, you'll probably get some notifications in your inbox when they drop. You may even be able to get early access to some ads if you're a member of the retailer's rewards program.

Depending on what you're shopping for, you may want to check electronics stores, department stores, clothing stores and specialty retailers such as those dealing in home goods or gaming. Be sure to check out online-only retailers — since they don't have the in-store equivalent of Black Friday, they're likely to have some good Cyber Monday deals. Lastly, the old-fashioned Sunday newspaper is a good place to look for those stores you might not have considered.

Another factor to consider is flash sales. Throughout the month and especially on Thanksgiving weekend, many retailers will offer flash sales that only last for a few hours. Consider signing up for a few email lists if you want in on these.

Before you get too far into your search, spend some time making your list. If you know you want a new phone but you're not sure which one, it's easy to get overwhelmed and rush into a purchase based on what looks like a good deal on Cyber Monday. Know what kind of features you want beforehand and watch for any deal breakers you may have.

Popular Items

Popular Items

• Laptops and PCs
• Phones
• Tablets
• Smart Home Devices
• Smartwatches
• Subscriptions and Gift Cards
• Headphones, Earbuds and Speakers
• Gaming Consoles
• Cameras
• Appliances

Without further adieu, let's take a look at what kind of items are likely to see the best Cyber Monday deals of 2021.

1. Laptops and PCs

As implied by the name, Cyber Monday is a great time to target the techies of the world. You can find laptops and PCs with deep discounts. This year, we may see some strong deals on MacBook Air models, Chromebooks and possibly even the new MacBooks coming out next month. And of course, plenty of Windows devices are likely to drop in price too, particularly those with 11th-generation Intel Core i5 and i7 processors.

Many retailers will tack on free accessories like external storage or laptop bags or offer bundle deals with monitors and keyboards. Some, like Apple, like to offer free gift cards in lieu of further discounts.

2. Phones

Cyber Monday 2021 should be a great day for phone deals. BOGOs tend to be popular, so it could be a good time to snap up some new phones for the whole family. This year, we're likely to see deals on several popular phone models, including the newly released Apple iPhone 13 and Google Pixel 5. The Galaxy S21 came out back in January, so it may see even steeper discounts.

You can absolutely expect a deal on these new phones, but if you want the biggest discount, consider going a year back. Phones that were released the year or two prior usually see sizable discounts, so this year, expect some good Cyber Monday deals for the iPhone 12 lineup and the Galaxy S20.

If you're willing to sign a new contract, you could even get your phone for free. Last year, for instance, you could get the iPhone XR or 12 mini for free with new lines or two-year contracts. Other phones were knocked down by several hundred dollars, like the Galaxy Note 10 Plus, which dropped from $1,099 to $649, or the Pixel 4a 5G, which Google offered for $199 off the regular price of $399.

3. Tablets

Expect all varieties of tablets to go on sale on Cyber Monday. Last year, we saw affordable tablets like the Fire HD 10 drop by more than half the price, with premium iPads and the pricier Galaxy Tab A also reduced by considerable amounts. Even the half-tablet, half-laptop Surface Pro saw savings. This year is probably going to look similar.

4. Smart Home Devices

Smart home devices, like voice assistants and smart thermostats, are another great pick for Cyber Monday, but their prices tend to stay relatively stable throughout the weekend. Keep an eye out for items like smart lights, doorbells, security systems, alarms, routers and more.

5. Smartwatches

From Fitbits to Apple Watches, these wearable devices should also drop in price on Cyber Monday, letting you get a start on your New Year's resolution with a fitness-focused model or just enjoy a nice piece of tech for less. This year, we'll likely see several Apple Watches on sale, like the Apple Watch SE and the newly released Apple Watch 6. Other big competitors to look out for include the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 and the Fitbit Versa 3.

6. Subscriptions and Gift Cards

Digital subscriptions and gift cards aren't usually on sale throughout the year, but Thanksgiving weekend is an exception. You can often find discounts on gift cards and subscriptions, such as streaming services or gaming memberships. These are popular choices for gifts or simply stocking up.

7. Headphones, Earbuds and Speakers

AirPods were consistently on last year's list of the hottest-selling products. Headphones, earbuds and speakers often see steep discounts, and they make great gifts. The AirPods Pro continue to be a hot seller, along with Samsung Galaxy Buds and Bose QuietComfort Earbuds. All of those manufacturers offer more affordable models too.

There's almost no shortage of options when it comes to audio, and you can find deals on headphones and speakers from the likes of Bose, Sony, JBL, Sennheiser, Harman/Kardon and many others.

8. Gaming Consoles

Unfortunately, things might be a little slow in the gaming department this year. The PlayStation 5 has been notoriously hard to find ever since its release, and the supply chain hasn't improved much. They're likely to be in short supply. The Xbox Series X isn't getting released until Nov. 10, so we probably won't see any significant sales on that either. What we could see, however, is deals on the older versions of these consoles, like the Xbox One or the PlayStation 4.

The Nintendo Switch has historically seen good deals during the holiday weekend, something that doesn't happen much throughout the rest of the year, and they often include game bundles or special editions. Plus, with a new OLED version of the Switch coming out soon, the standard model could be reduced in price even more. New game releases often see strong sales on Cyber Monday as well.

9. Cameras

Whether you're a fan of Sony, Nikon, Canon, Fujifilm or another brand, you can expect good Cyber Monday deals on both digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) cameras and the newer mirrorless designs. Camera prices dropped anywhere between 10% and 65% last year — the Canon EOS 5DS even fell by a whopping $2,400.

In addition to DLSR and mirrorless varieties, discounts should be available on compact cameras, drones, action cameras and instant cameras.

10. Appliances

Although many of the big appliances are best purchased on Friday, Cyber Monday is a great time for small kitchen and home appliances, like vacuums, air fryers, blenders, coffee makers and multicookers. Even some popular brands like Dyson, Keurig and KitchenAid are known to drop prices by a few hundred dollars.

Recycle or Sell Used Devices With ecoATM

If you're going to be one of the many shoppers buying a new phone during the Cyber Monday deals this 2021 season, consider selling or recycling your used one at an ecoATM kiosk

If you're going to be one of the many shoppers buying a new phone during the Cyber Monday deals this 2021 season, consider selling or recycling your used one at an ecoATM kiosk. We can offer cash for used phones or ensure it is responsibly recycled for free.

Your used phone could help you pay for your Cyber Monday purchase, but even if not, we can help you keep it out of the landfill and reduce the damage that comes from improperly recycled electronics — since 2009, ecoATM has helped collected over 37 million devices. To see what you can earn from your phone or where to recycle sell it, enter its information into our pricing tool or find a kiosk near you!