Cyber Monday 2018 Underscores the Seismic Shift in Retail - TheStreet

This will likely be a record year for online sales as retail foot traffic slips.

According to Adobe (ADBE) - Get Report Analytics, shoppers are expected to spend $7.8 billion on Cyber Monday, up more than 18% from last year and almost 40% from 2016.

The trend isn't just for Cyber Monday, though, it's the entire stretch from Thanksgiving, Black Friday and through the weekend. According to Statista, online Thanksgiving sales of $3.3 billion grew almost 14% vs. 2017, while Black Friday sales soared 18%. Weekend sales jumped 25.5%.

These numbers are incredible, particularly given the mood on Wall Street. It shows that everyday Americans still feel relatively upbeat and are planning for a fun (and loaded!) holiday season. Foot traffic on Black Friday and Thanksgiving reportedly fell 1%, although some sources have recorded even larger declines. It begs the question of which companies are set to benefit the most and which will be hurt the most.

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There are obvious winners, like payment-processing companies and peer-to-peer platforms. As sales shift online, shoppers are forced to pay with debit and credit card solutions like Visa (V) - Get Report , MasterCard (MA) - Get Report and American Express (AXP) - Get Report , or options like PayPal (PYPL) - Get Report . Sending money to friends and family (perhaps splitting gift costs) also benefits companies like PayPal and its Venmo platform.

There are other obvious winners, like Amazon (AMZN) - Get Report and eBay (EBAY) - Get Report , as e-commerce companies continue to see more traffic. Shipping companies like FedEx (FDX) - Get Report and United Parcel Service (UPS) - Get Report can also benefit from the uptick in shipping volume.

Finally, retailers who have invested in omni-channel operations are also benefiting from the uptick in sales. Or at least, they're not getting steamrolled by online giants as much as they once were. Companies like Target (TGT) - Get Report , Walmart (WMT) - Get Report , Macy's (M) - Get Report and Kohl's (KSS) - Get Report are just a couple of examples.

Either way, this year is shaping up to be a strong holiday season, something investors are hoping will lead to a Santa Claus rally in the stock market after a two-month bludgeoning.

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This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author had no positions in the stocks mentioned.