Green Monday Definition

What Is Green Monday?

Green Monday refers to one of the retail industry's busiest shopping days, occurring on the second Monday in December. Green Monday represents the day many shoppers rush to purchase last-minute holiday gifts and take advantage of deals.

Key Takeaways

  • Green Monday is the second Monday in December and one of the busiest retail shopping days in the United States.
  • eBay claims it created the phrase in 2007 after it realized that the most profitable sales day was the second Monday of that year.
  • The winter holiday season includes the year's most profitable retail sales days: Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Green Monday.

Understanding Green Monday

The web shopping site eBay claims to have coined the phrase "Green Monday" in 2007 after it realized that the second Monday in December was one of its most profitable sales days. Green Monday is also known as Cyber Monday 2 in retail circles due to its high volume of online shoppers seeking last-minute holiday deals.

The "green" in Green Monday can refer to green for dollars or environmentally green for those who consider online shopping a more eco-friendly endeavor than racking up deals in brick-and-mortar stores.

Green Monday is eclipsed by Black Friday and Cyber Monday in terms of popularity, but this retail event is becoming a marker of holiday sales. Green Monday is promoted by big-box stores and online shopping giants like Amazon and Target. Other retailers may simply offer holiday deals on that day to reach holiday shoppers and reduce merchandise before the end of the year.

A note for those sending presents: If you had packages to send out for the 2021 holiday season, Green Monday was only a couple of days before shipping dates kicked in. The USPS website indicated that Dec. 15, 2021, was the last date to send domestic packages using regular ground shipping. UPS ground shipping users needed to check the company's website for its ZIP code's cutoff date. USPS Priority Mail and UPS Next Day Air users could wait as late as Dec. 18, 2021, and Dec. 23, 2021, respectively. FedEx's cutoff for ground shipping was Dec. 15, 2021. Green Monday 2022 is Dec. 12.

Green Monday vs. Black Friday

There is no shortage of catchphrases for the major retail shopping days that occur near the winter holidays. Black Friday describes the Friday after Thanksgiving when many people start their holiday shopping. Many people are off of work and eager to spend money. Online and traditional retailers capitalize on this busy shopping day by offering special sales.

Traditionally, sales were exclusive to the Friday after Thanksgiving. Now some large retailers offer sales before Thanksgiving and for several days after including Small Business Saturday. Retailers offer discounts online and in-store on Black Friday. Many open their doors during the predawn hours on Black Friday. To keep up with the competition, some retailers keep their operations going on the Thanksgiving holiday, while others begin offering deals earlier during November.

Some analysts and investors look at Black Friday sales numbers as a litmus test of the overall health of the entire retail industry

Green Monday vs. Cyber Monday

Cyber Monday describes the Monday following Thanksgiving when online retailers offer above-average deals to entice consumers to shop online. It is like Black Friday, but for online shoppers. Cyber Monday is now a global phenomenon, and in recent years, sales on that day have exceeded Black Friday sales.

Cyber Monday retailers often have Cyber Monday sales occurring at the same time as Black Friday sales. This tactic targets all types of consumers, those who enjoy the hustle and bustle of Black Friday shopping and also those who prefer to shop online.

Approximately 179.8 million consumers in the U.S. shopped during the 2021 five-day holiday weekend between Thanksgiving Day and Cyber Monday, down slightly compared to 2020, but still falls in the four-year average range, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF).

When Is Green Monday?

Green Monday occurs on the second Monday in December each year. In 2022, Green Monday takes place on Dec. 12.

When Did Green Monday Start?

The first Green Monday was in December 2007. eBay maintains it created the name after it figured out that the second Monday in December was its most profitable sales day of the year.


What Is Cyber Monday?

Cyber Monday takes place on the Monday following the Thanksgiving weekend. Online retailers give discounts on this day and traditional retailers offer exclusive, website-only deals.

Article Sources
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  1. eBay. “eBay Launches Last-Minute Deals Starting on the 10th Anniversary of Green Monday.”

  2. WebFX. "History of Black Friday and Cyber Monday Spending."

  3. U.S. Postal Service. "Holiday Shipping Deadlines."

  4. UPS. "2021 Year-End Holiday Schedule," Page 1.

  5. FedEx. “2021 Shipping Deadlines for Holiday Packages.”

  6. National Retail Federation. "Winter Holiday FAQs."

  7. U.S. Small Business Administration. "Small Business Saturday."

  8. Ecwid by Lightspeed. "What Is Cyber Monday?"

  9. National Retail Federation. "Nearly 180 Million Shop Over Thanksgiving Holiday Weekend."