SHAKOPEE, Minn. (KMSP) - This Cyber Monday is expected to be the largest online shopping day in history. Adobe expects sales will reach $6.6 billion, up more than 16 percent from last year.
Online retail giant, Amazon, is expected to take home a substantial chunk of that pie, which has the fulfillment center in Shakopee on overdrive. The warehouse opened last summer and covers the size of about 14 football fields.
“We've spent all year scaling our systems, launching new features, new types of systems that we can bring online, and today's the test if it's all going to work,” said Amazon Senior Principal Engineer, John Darrow.
Amidst the robots, conveyor belts and real-life employees, the madness of Cyber Monday is the pinnacle for Amazon and other online retailers.
The fulfillment center in Shakopee is one of more than 75 like it across the country. It is home to about 2,500 employees and the company adds about a thousand more for the holidays.
“We measure our lives at Amazon in how many holidays we’ve been through,” said Amazon Spokesperson, Julie Law.
Like with most holiday shopping seasons, Amazon is seeing electronics top many wish lists.
However, Law adds that smart toys are a hit this year.
“As a mom, toys are getting smarter," said Law. "Toys really encourage science, technology, engineering and math, and I love that. I have a daughter who is six who is really into science, and electricity and circuits and so I'm really encouraged to see how much that technology has changed in toys.”
The business for all online companies is rapidly changing and booming. Retailers are now offering online deals beyond Cyber Monday and through the entire holiday season.
“It's really the next decade that's going to be the paradigm shift that's ahead of us as far as kind of reinventing how the supply chain works and fulfillment works,” Darrow said.
Over Thanksgiving and Black Friday this year, Amazon saw a 50 percent bump in shopping from their mobile app.
“Assigning all the work down to all of our employees, our associates who do all the hard work of getting all the shipments out the door, making that happen reliably, near 100 percent, reliably so that we don't fail any customer promise, that's the hardest part, making sure nothing can fail,” Darrow said.
Last year on Cyber Monday, Amazon shoppers bought 64 million items. That had fulfillment centers like the one in Shakopee processing 740 items per second.
“Total volume, every single year we break new records all the time, so it's super cool to see and I have no doubts that this year will be any different from years prior,” said Amazon Senior Operations Manager Aaron Meyers.
“It’s sitting down with our associates, all of our employees, just figuring out how to do this better," said Darrow. "And also, constantly reinventing everything. The way we did it three years ago, or the way we did it 20 years ago is certainly not the way we want to do it next year, or the year after that."
Fox 9 asked Amazon for an update on their selection for the next new headquarters. The Twin Cities has submitted a bid along with many other cities across the country. Their spokesperson had no updates on the decision.