Target and PayPal Sites Report Problems on Cyber Monday

1 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Cyber Monday overwhelms Target’s website.

Cyber Monday, the online version of Black Friday, is not immune to traffic jams of shoppers rushing to take advantage of post-Thanksgiving sales. Target Corp. struggled to handle a surge of e-commerce traffic on Cyber Monday, its biggest day for online sales, making the website inaccessible to some users.A number of sites have buckled under the pressure of increased traffic as more Americans turned to online shopping over the Black Friday weekend than those who visited brick-and-mortar stores, according to new data from the National Retail Federation.

Some of the most popular websites experienced an overload on Monday, similar to a crowd pushing its way into an already packed brick-and-mortar store. offered 15 percent off almost everything on Monday, bringing a flood of traffic that was twice as high as its previous busiest day, the Minneapolis-based company said in a statement. And with Cyber Monday now in full swing, another high-profile retailer is seeing the impact of this increased flood of online shoppers: is the latest to suffer outages, with its online site displaying a message to visitors citing “high traffic” as a cause of its delays. “So sorry,” the message reads, “but high traffic’s causing delays.

Shoppers were for a period of time unable to gain access to the site of Target, the discount chain,and PayPal, the online payments processing service. Foot Locker, Groupon and Victoria’s Secret also experienced brief outages or slowdowns Monday afternoon, according to Catchpoint Systems, a web monitoring firm. We apologize to guests who experience any delays, we appreciate their patience, Editor’s Note: This story has been updated with additional information on’s Cyber Monday performance and clarification that the site is not down. Currently, there appear to be regional outages for the site, according to early data from web performance and monitoring solution provider Catchpoint Systems, which has been tracking the performance of e-commerce websites over this holiday shopping season.

The company responded by having a “Black Saturday” sale instead, but still faced intermittent outage through Sunday morning, only stabilizing around 5:30 AM ET. Other sites, including Newegg and HP suffered some outages, and buzzy newcomer saw some delays on desktop and on mobile over the weekend, but these were minor.

The increased web traffic even extended to impact PayPal, whose service also suffered another outage this morning, causing problems for those shoppers trying to buy from eBay and other online stores where the payment service is offered as a checkout option. According to PayPal’s event notification page, the live site and the API experienced a “major impact” to their operations both yesterday and this morning. For many people, Monday was their first day back at work after the long Thanksgiving weekend, so some shopping was presumably being done surreptitiously while at work. The Monday event was still flagged on PayPal’s site as being “open,” meaning unresolved, as of the time of writing. (Update: PayPal now reports the issue has been resolved. “Earlier today, PayPal experienced a brief, intermittent interruption in our service.

Instead, had to limit traffic to keep the site functional. “We continue to receive and process thousands of orders from guests who are shopping the entire site and taking advantage of the discount coupled with free shipping,” the spokesperson says. “As we experience spikes in traffic, our systems place guests in a queue and prompt them to access the site later.

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