By David Goldman
NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — Target’s website crashed on Cyber Monday, one of the biggest shopping days of the year.
The mega-retailer is offering 15% off every online order on Monday, along with 30% off select clothing, shoes and toys. Target also featured discounts on a large host of household items on Cyber Monday.
A message on Target’s website stated that the site error was caused by high traffic. Later in the morning, it was back up for some users, but not all.
“Both traffic and order volumes are exceeding Target’s Thursday Black Friday event, which was our biggest day ever for online sales,” said Eddie Baeb, spokesman for Target. “To help manage the volume, we have been metering traffic to the site. We have teams working diligently to restore Target.com to full functionality.”
When websites have an overload of visitors, some people inevitably are unable to access the site. Companies ramp up server capacity on high traffic days, but it’s notoriously difficult to predict how much traffic websites will experience during certain hours of the day.
It’s akin to thousands of people calling a phone number at the same time. No matter how many extensions that phone number might have, once a critical mass of people start dialing in, some people are going to start getting busy signals.
Target isn’t alone. Neiman Marcus, Best Buy, Walmart, and eBay all suffered hiccups on Black Friday or over the weekend, according to multiple news reports.
Patient shoppers have been rewarded, however, with some very good deals.