Eau Claire (WQOW)- "Online shopping is convenient," explains Mark Allen, GSI Senior Director of Operations.
Cyber Monday has arrived; and for companies like GSI Commerce in Eau Claire, it's a day for record setting sales. Across the country, experts predict consumers will spend between $1.5 and $2 billion on Cyber Monday.
"Industry experts are predicting about a 20 percent increase this year in online shopping and we are expecting to see that similar trend or better," Allen reveals.
GSI works with companies such as Dick's Sporting Goods, Ralph Loren, and Polo.
"We partner with these retailers where we'll provide e-commerce solutions to them; whether that's running their actual web store itself, handling their customer service for their web store business, marketing efforts to help them grow their e-commerce business," says Allen.
GSI is hiring more workers to keep up during the holiday rush.
"Typically we employ about 400 to 450 regular employees throughout the year and then during the peak season, we'll range from anywhere between 800 to 1,200 employees. So this year I believe we hired an additional 700 people," he says.
Those seasonal workers are paid about $10 an hour. Some companies don't even have to wait for Cyber Monday to start raking in the dough. Online sales on Black Friday topped $1 billion for the first time in history. And more people shopped online on Thanksgiving than ever before.
"We saw a 36 percent increase in cyber sales on Thanksgiving," Allen says. "Most people have family over. They don't necessarily want to pack everybody into a vehicle and go somewhere. So that's where we see if deals are out there, they are going to take advantage of that."
Over the four-day holiday weekend, sales hit more than $59 billion. That was up about 13 percent over last year.