In Lean Times, Consumers Buy Online: Reports
U.S. consumers spent an estimated $16.3
billion online during the third quarter of this year, according to
Internet measurement firm NetRatings, which said Wednesday that the
figure represents a 60 percent increase over the $10.3 billion
spent in the same period a year ago.
Meanwhile, ComScore Networks reported Wednesday that shoppers forged
the busiest day for e-commerce this year on Monday, with a single-
day total of $220 million in purchases.
"While the Friday following Thanksgiving is traditionally the day
to watch in the offline world, it's the following Monday - when
people return to work and are able to use their company's
high-speed Internet connection - that really waves the starting flag for
Holiday e-commerce," said Dan Hess, a vice president with Reston,
Va.-based ComScore. "As we expected, Monday's online sales actually
exceeded those of the entire weekend, and were dramatically higher
than the post-Thanksgiving Friday."
NetRatings, reporting on the results of its Nielsen/NetRatings and
Harris Interactive eCommercePulse surveys, said that the travel
sector was the online-sales leader during the third quarter,
accounting for nearly $4.3 billion of all spending. However, more
than two-thirds of the quarter's shopping days were already history
when terrorist attacks in the U.S. also slammed the travel
ComScore said that its single-day tally for Nov. 26 saw travel-
related sales total $65 million, which it estimated was about
average for all Mondays since April of this year (but not counting
those in September).
Monday's spending on non-travel items totaled approximately $156
million, up dramatically from an average Monday haul of $87
million, ComScore said.
NetRatings, of Milpitas, Calif., said the $4.3 billion in online
travel spending during the third quarter was an increase of 53
percent over the same period a year ago.
Clothing and apparel garnered $1.5 billion during the quarter, up
77 percent, while online auctions claimed $1.2 billion, up 94
percent, NetRatings said.
"Building on a growing number of online users, increased likelihood
of shopping, and higher average spending, e-commerce continues to
post solid year-over-year gains," Sean Kaldor, vice president of
analytical services at NetRatings, said in a prepared statement.
"Posting 60 percent growth in the face of a challenging economy is
a remarkable achievement, and key categories such as apparel and
auctions were critical to that success."
--Reported by Steven Bonisteel, Newsbytes.com, www.newsbytes.com .