Green Monday: What, When, Why, and Where

The Second-Best Day for Online Holiday Deals

Young woman using credit card during online shopping
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 Jamie Grill / Getty Images

Green Monday is the biggest online shopping day in December. It falls on the second Monday of the month. That’s when shoppers realize they only have around 10 shipping days left before Christmas. In 2020, Green Monday falls on December 14.

It's also called Cyber Monday 2 because it’s the second-biggest day for online holiday shopping. Cyber Monday is the first Monday after Thanksgiving, and it's the busiest online shopping day of the year.

Green Monday has been promoted by top stores like Walmart, Target, and Amazon to extend the excitement around Black Friday, the first shopping day after Thanksgiving.  The 2020 sales deals are typically posted on these stores’ websites soon after.

Both Green Monday and Cyber Monday occur after the in-store gift purchasing done on Black Friday.

In 2020, online sales accounted for roughly 25% of retail spending.

The popularity of online holiday shopping should come as no surprise. Half of all online shoppers say that free shipping was the most important deciding factor in making an online purchase.

In fact, even while in-store, many consumers choose an online experience: 45% of Americans used their cell phones in a store to search for a better price online, while another 12% used their phone to pay for an item while in a store.

The holiday shopping season is critical to businesses because one-fifth of annual retail sales occur between Black Friday and Christmas. Some, like jewelers, see even more of their annual revenue during the holidays.

How Green Monday Got Its Name

In 2007, eBay reported that its busiest day was the second Monday in December. At that time, it was the last day shoppers could get gifts in the mail so they would arrive by Christmas. eBay christened it Green Monday for two reasons. First, green meant revenue for the company. Second, eBay markets online shopping as more environmentally friendly or greener than driving from store to store.

Green Monday is receiving more competition from sales extended through Cyber Week. With Amazon Prime and other services, shoppers can wait until closer to Christmas to buy online and have their purchases arrive on time. But Green Monday is still a good bargain, with retailers offering substantial discounts from regular prices.

Green Monday Sales History Chart

The last actual recorded statistic for Green Monday online retail sales was in 2016. Estimates of Green Monday revenue for the following years, based on Cyber Monday sales as recorded by Comscore, are in the chart below. 

Green Monday Sales History
Year Sales (in billions) Percent Increase
2008 $0.859 -2.5%
2009 $0.854 -0.6%
2010 $0.954 11.7%
2011 $1.133 18.8%
2012 $1.275 12.5%
2013 $1.401 9.9%
2014 $1.615 15.3%
2015 $1.408 -12.8%
2016 $1.621 15.1%
2017 $2.059* 27.0%*
2018 $2.629* 27.7%*
2019 $3.454* 31.4%*

How to Get the Best Green Monday Deals

Each store posts its Green Monday sales deals on either their own Green Monday or Cyber Monday websites. Look to your favorite retailers to see if they are holding Green Monday specials. For example, in 2019, Shoes.com offered up to 60% off—plus an extra 35% off—its Green Monday Madness sale.

Some stores black out their price matching policy during Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but quietly reinstate it for Green Monday. Ask if retailers will price match before choosing where to purchase Green Monday deals.

Green Monday is a great time to look for free Christmas shipping promotions. Retailers know you need to get it shipped in time for the holiday, and may offer free, speedy shipping.

Key Takeaways

  • Green Monday marks the 10-day shipping period before Christmas. Its success relies on people’s panicky realization that they have very little time to buy and ship gifts in time for Christmas.
  • Good bargains abound as an extension of Black Friday and Cyber Monday retail extravaganzas.
  • Green Monday falls on the second Monday of December.
  • Because of the large volume of online sales, Green Monday is also called Cyber Monday 2.