’Tis the season for online shopping … all year long. Every month has an occasion to celebrate, providing ecommerce businesses with frequent opportunities to engage and sell to constantly connected consumers. The key to success — think: increases in sales, revenue, new customers and website traffic, to name a few — lies in planning ahead for these events, sometimes as much as a year in advance. For that, an ecommerce holiday calendar is an indispensable tool, making it easy to keep track of the big holidays, like Mother’s Day and Christmas, as well as lesser known “holidays,” like International Coffee Day. All of these occasions provide ecommerce businesses with myriad reasons to craft thematic marketing campaigns, offer special deals, discounts and other incentives, and forge deeper customer ties just by wishing shoppers a happy holiday.

The Future of Ecommerce & Trends

The ecommerce market shows no signs of slowing down: Fueled by the COVID-19 pandemic, global ecommerce sales in 2020 reached $4.28 trillion, up 27.6% over 2019, while in the U.S. it topped $860 billion, up 44% year over year. For the 2020 holiday season specifically, online sales shot up over 45%, to $201.3 billion.

Looking ahead, worldwide ecommerce sales are forecast to reach $6.5 trillion by 2023, accounting for 22% of all retail sales. Even further out, business-to-business (B2B) ecommerce sales are poised to reach $25.65 trillion in 2028(opens in new tab), according to Grand View Research.

Concurrently, consumers’ behavior and ecommerce expectations continue to evolve and shape new shopping trends. It’s important to stay on top of these trends, not only for strategic holiday sales-planning purposes but all year round. Current ecommerce trends that will continue to hold sway as we move into 2022 include:

  • Mobile ecommerce growth: Online sales via mobile devices — such as smartphones, tablets and smart home devices — are on track to account for nearly three-quarters of all retail ecommerce sales this year. The emergence of 5G networks will make these devices more powerful than ever, not only speeding up the mobile purchasing process, but also enabling use of advanced technologies that rely on ultrafast data processing. (More on advanced tech soon.)

  • Multiple payment options: It stands to reason that the more ways customers can digitally pay for their online purchases, the more likely they’ll hit the buy button. Credit and debit cards, third-party services such as PayPal and Apple Pay, and electronic checks are well-known forms of digital payment. Some online businesses now accept payment via Venmo, Zelle and other mobile apps typically associated with peer-to-peer transactions, as well as cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.

  • Multiple fulfillment options: The best-case scenario for order fulfillment boils down to two words: fast and free. These days, even two-day delivery may seem like a long time for consumers who can opt for same-day delivery. In addition, many businesses with both online and brick-and-mortar storefronts now offer hybrid fulfillment options: Customers can buy online and pick up their purchases in-store (BOPIS) or curbside (BOPAC), and they can also buy online and return in-store (BORIS). Similarly, some brands without a physical presence are teaming with those that do, so online shoppers can return their purchases at a brick-and-mortar for free. The team of Amazon and Kohl’s is an example of such a partnership.

  • Advanced technologies: Artificial intelligence, machine learning, augmented reality and voice recognition are some of the technologies that continue to gain traction in ecommerce. Use cases include personalized product recommendations and interactions based on previous shopping history, customer-service chatbots, virtual product try-ons and other forms of experiential retail, as well as verbal ordering via a digital assistant such as Alexa or Siri. Ecommerce companies can also leverage advanced technologies for their own business needs, such as dynamic pricing, inventory management and order fulfillment.

  • Data transparency: Ecommerce businesses collect and store a wealth of private information about their customers — and their customers know it. Myriad regulations are already in place that govern what kinds of information ecommerce providers can collect about customers and how long they can store it, for example. Companies can take extra steps by making their data practices clear to current and prospective customers and asking for consent for data collection and sharing, when necessary.

  • Sustainability: Ecommerce companies have seen a significant increase in eco-conscious customers, particularly among millennials and younger generations. On their radar: brands that use environmentally friendly product production, packaging and shipping methods; incorporate recyclable materials; and support green initiatives. What’s more, research shows the majority of consumers are willing to pay more for sustainable products.

2021 Ecommerce Retail Dates & Holidays for 2021 and 2022

Few planning tools are as simple, yet effective as a good ol’ fashioned calendar. As you prepare your ecommerce holiday calendar, look for unique holidays to creatively highlight products and services that, if not an exact match, can be positioned in relevant ways. For example, National Pizza Day is the perfect occasion for companies to market their pizza stones and pans, herb-growing kits or pizza-themed clothing, games and books.

Following is a month-by-month breakdown of holidays in the remaining months of 2021 and all of 2022. It’s also a good idea to notate when to begin planning for an occasion that might still be several months away. Another pro tip: Set up your calendar to send reminders of what’s coming up.


  • October: This month’s biggest holiday is, of course, Halloween (Oct. 31), when customers buy candies, costumes and decorations — an estimated $8 billion worth in 2020(opens in new tab), according to the National Retail Federation. And, for the record, many shoppers begin their end-of-the-year holiday shopping this month. Other October dates to note are International Coffee Day (Oct. 1), National Golf Lovers’ Day (Oct. 4) and National Mother-in-Law Day (Oct. 25).

  • November: Holiday shopping — and the ensuing frenzy — picks up in November, so it’s only apt that the month kicks off with National Stress Awareness Day (Nov. 3). Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights, follows (Nov. 4). One week later is Veterans Day and Singles’ Day (both Nov. 11), the latter a Chinese holiday that celebrates being single. Thanksgiving (Nov. 25) arrives two weeks later, with its focus on food, family and, yes, online shopping. Last year, shoppers spent a cumulative $5 billion to $6 billion online on Thanksgiving Day, according to several reports. Next come three days of solid shopping and deep discounts across most product types: Black Friday (Nov. 26), Small Business Saturday (Nov. 27) and Cyber Monday (Nov. 29), the final one accounting for more than $10 billion in sales in 2020, according to many sources. Also, this year Hanukkah arrives early, with the first of the eight-day celebration beginning Nov. 28.

  • December: Before the rush of Panic Saturday (Dec. 18), which marks the last Saturday before Christmas, don’t overlook the lucrative Green Monday (Dec. 13), dubbed by some Cyber Monday 2, which reminds last-minute shoppers that there are just 12 days left before Christmas (Dec. 25) and they should place their orders so gifts arrive on time. Christmas is followed by Boxing Day (Dec. 26), celebrated in the U.K. and Commonwealth countries. Kwanzaa begins the same day and goes through Jan. 1. The month wraps up with one of partygoers’ favorites: New Year’s Eve (Dec. 31).


  • January: The first month of the year kicks off with New Year’s Day (Jan. 1), when shoppers shift their focus from parties and gift-giving to resolutions and planning for the year ahead. International Mind-Body-Wellness Day (Jan. 3) reinforces the concept of self-care. Other January holidays include Martin Luther King Jr. Day (Jan. 17), Get to Know Your Customers Day (Jan. 20/April 21/July 21/Oct. 20, all representing the third Thursday of each quarter) — a perfect opportunity for ecommerce businesses to connect with their digital customers, Data Privacy Day (Jan. 28) and National Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day (Jan. 31). Any ecommerce business that ships fragile items, as well as their customers who love to pop the bubbles, has cause to celebrate.

  • February: February may be the shortest month of the year, but it packs plenty of holidays. Importantly, February is Black History Month, which recognizes and celebrates the achievements of African Americans. The month also marks the beginning of the Chinese and Korean New Year, the Year of the Tiger (Feb. 1). Next comes Groundhog Day (Feb. 2), National Thank a Mail Carrier Day (Feb. 4), Safer Internet Day (Feb. 8) and National Pizza Day (Feb. 9), followed by Super Bowl LVI (Feb. 13) and Valentine’s Day (Feb. 14), which last year accounted for more than $21 billion in U.S. sales — half of which went to jewelry purchases and dining out, according to the NRF. Not to be forgotten, National Clean Out Your Computer Day also falls on Feb. 14, then one week later is Presidents’ Day (Feb. 21).

  • March: March comes in like a lion with Mardi Gras (March 1), a festival of costumes, parties, parades and food, whether or not you’re in New Orleans. This is followed by International Women’s Day (March 8), though the entire month is Women’s History Month. National Pi Day (March 14) honors the mathematical concept of pi (3.14, in brief), which lends itself to a slew of creative pricing deals. St. Patrick’s Day (March 17) follows, as does India’s Holi Festival (March 17 and 18), which is also referred to as the Festival of Love, Festival of Colors and Festival of Spring. Spring equinox and International Happiness Day share a date (March 20), followed less than a week later by Make Up Your Own Holiday Day (March 26).

  • April: April opens with April Fools’ Day (April 1), a day for fun and jokes that may offset the more serious Tax Day (April 15), which comes a day after National Gardening Day (April 14). Next comes Easter (April 17), which, according to the NRF, generates more in candy sales than Halloween. Earth Day (April 22) represents a good day to highlight a company’s environmental practices, followed by National Honesty Day (April 30).

  • May: The fifth month of the year offers numerous days for online shopping tie-ins, starting with National Teacher Day (May 3) and Star Wars Day (May 4) — May the fourth be with you. Americans love their margaritas on Cinco de Mayo (May 5), though not many know the day signifies the Mexican army’s 1862 victory over France during the Franco-Mexican War. Celebrations continue for the Kentucky Derby (May 7) and, next, Mother’s Day (May 8), which was expected to account for more than $28 billion in 2021 sales(opens in new tab), according to the NRF. Memorial Day (May 30), marks the unofficial start of summer and a long weekend of substantial product discounts.

  • June: June has more obscure, interesting holidays than any other month. Your customers may enjoy National I Love my Dentist Day (June 2), National Weed Your Garden Day (June 13) or National Flip Flop Day (June 17). Father’s Day (June 19) shares the date with Juneteenth, or Freedom Day, the new federal holiday that commemorates the end of slavery in the United States. National Leon Day (June 25) — Leon is “Noel” spelled backward — signifies the halfway point to Christmas. Also a possibility this month based on the year before: Amazon Prime Day, which was held this month in 2021, earlier than usual. A 2022 date has yet to be announced.

  • July: Two little-known holidays hit this month: Zip Code Day (July 1) celebrates the invention of, yes, ZIP codes, which made their debut in 1963. Be A Kid Again Day (July 8) encourages adults to give themselves a break and act like a kid again. Sandwiched between the two is, of course, Independence Day (July 4), another multibillion-dollar national online shopping holiday when nearly all categories of products and services go on sale. World Emoji Day (July 17) provides an opportunity for fun, emoji-expressed marketing campaigns.

  • August: August begins with the mouthwatering National Watermelon Day (Aug. 3), and also includes International Cat Day (Aug. 8), National Nonprofit Day (Aug. 17), National Dog Day (Aug. 26) and, closing out the month, National Beach Day (Aug. 30). At the same time, kids start heading back to school this month, which means promotional opportunities for many ecommerce categories, including electronics (laptops, tablets, monitors), school supplies, dorm room products, clothing, etc.

  • September: Fall begins in September, with Labor Day (Sept. 5) marking the unofficial end of summer and a long weekend of deals and discounts. Other occasions include Grandparents’ Day (Sept. 11), International Talk like a Pirate Day (Sept. 19), the United Nations’ International Day of Peace (Sept. 21), National Cooking Day (Sept. 25), Rosh Hashanah — the Jewish New Year, (Sept. 25-27), and National Love People Day (Sept. 30).

  • October: Ditto the holidays noted in October 2021 (above), plus Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement (Oct. 4-5), and Diwali, which is celebrated on Oct. 24. Columbus Day also comes one day earlier (Oct. 10).

  • November: In November 2022, Thanksgiving moves to Nov. 24. The three big shopping days also shift by one day, with Black Friday on Nov. 25, Small Business Appreciation Day on Nov. 26 and Cyber Monday on Nov. 28. In 2022, Hanukkah moves to December.

  • December: Same as for 2021, though Green Monday is on Dec. 12, Panic Saturday is on Dec. 17 and Hanukkah starts Dec. 18.

2021 Ecommerce Retail Dates & Holidays

Free Ecommerce Holidays Calendar Template

Every month of the year presents numerous holidays and occasions that ecommerce companies can leverage to boost sales. Plotting out on a calendar all the events that matter most to your business is your first best step to ensuring you don’t miss a single opportunity to connect with customers, whether with special deals and discounts or just to wish them a happy holiday. In addition to “penning” in the dates for when each holiday falls, it’s a good idea to note when planning should begin for occasions months away.

Get the free holiday calendar template

This free calendar template makes it easy to keep track of special occasions for you to craft thematic marketing campaigns, offer incentives, and forge deeper customer ties while wishing shoppers a happy holiday.

Get the free template(opens in new tab)

The calendar year is replete with holidays and events that offer the perfect reason for consumers to shop without ever stepping into a store. Continued growth in global ecommerce sales, now in the trillions of dollars, bears that out. But holidays also represent a great opportunity for ecommerce businesses to engage with customers with special deals and promotions, flash sales, free shipping, giveaways, a heartfelt holiday greeting and plenty more. The key is to plan in advance; for that, a time-tested calendar that marks the dates of relevant events — as well as when planning should begin for upcoming holidays — can be an ecommerce company’s best tool.