Cyber Monday brought in more than a billion dollars in sales for online retailers, but it’s not clear if the advertising and the retail industries are prepared for the increase in transactions. Sound crazy?

U.S. visits to the top 500 retail sites on Cyber Monday 2010 rose 16%, according to Experian Hitwise. The research firm estimates that search and cross-shopping strategies across a variety of retail Web sites accounted for 44% of referrals last week.

On Wednesday, Skai released its first 2010 Online Holiday Shopping Report. The key trends in the U.S. that benchmark paid-search advertising suggest the holiday shopping season began earlier this year. Thanksgiving Day, dubbed “Cyber Kickoff Day,” officially kicked off the frenzy. The report aggregates more than 1 billion ad impressions, 30 million clicks, and more than 1 million online sales transactions between Nov. 4 and 29.
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