RESTON, US: comScore has reported holiday season retail e-commerce spending for the first 30 days of the November-December 2012 holiday season. For the holiday season-to-date, US$20.4bn has been spent online, marking a 15% increase versus the corresponding days last year.
The most recent week saw three individual days eclipse US$1bn in spending, led by Cyber Monday, which became the heaviest online spending day on record at US$1.46bn. Tuesday, November 27 reached US$1.26bn, while Wednesday, November 28 reached US$1.11bn. Monday and Tuesday of this past week currently rank as the two heaviest online spending days in history, with the Tuesday total slightly outpacing that of Cyber Monday 2011.
2012 Holiday Season To Date vs. Corresponding Days* in 2011 Non-Travel (Retail) Spending Excludes Auctions and Large Corporate Purchases Total US - Home & Work Locations (Source: comScore, Inc)
Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 22)
Black Friday (Nov. 23)
Thanksgiving Weekend (Nov. 24-25)
Cyber Monday (Nov. 26)
Cyber Week (Nov. 26-Nov. 30)
*Corresponding days based on corresponding shopping days (November 3 thru December 2, 2011)
"Cyber Monday kicked off Cyber Week with a record spending total of US$1.46bn, but the 'sugar high' appears to be somewhat short-lived," said comScore chairman Gian Fulgoni. "While we still saw three billion dollar days this week, growth rates dampened following the peak demand of the Thanksgiving-to-Cyber Monday promotional period. This is a similar pattern to what we observed last year. In addition, unseasonably warm weather throughout many parts of the country may have given consumers some added impetus to shop in-store rather than rely on online shopping."
Free shipping remains important driver of online holiday spending
More than half of e-commerce transactions during each of the past three weeks of the holiday season have included free shipping, with a peak of 57% during the week ending Sunday, November 25. During the first five weeks of the holiday season, consumers spent an average of 42% more on free shipping transactions than on paid shipping transactions, including a 51% higher average order value during the week ending November 25.
Free vs. Paid Shipping Analysis for 2012 Holiday Season Excludes Transactions from Digital Content & Subscriptions Category Total US - Home & Work Locations (Source: comScore, Inc)
Percentage of Transactions
Average Order Value
November 4, 2012
November 11, 2012
November 18, 2012
November 25, 2012
December 2, 2012*
*Includes first five days of the week through Friday, November 30, 2012
"Though retailers must often sacrifice margins when they provide free shipping, they benefit because consumers tend to spend significantly more on those transactions," added Fulgoni. "Consumers may either be responding to the minimum spending thresholds needed in order to receive free shipping, or figure that as long as they know they're receiving free shipping it might be worth adding another item or two to their shopping basket."
Increasing adoption of smartphones and tablets continues to be a strong driver of product category sales during the online holiday shopping season. The top-gaining category for the season-to-date is Digital Content & Subscriptions, which includes digital book, music and video downloads, which has grown 25% versus year ago. The Consumer Electronics category, despite softening growth in flat panel TV sales, ranks 4th at 17% growth, largely on the strength of smartphone sales. The Computer Hardware category is seeing gains of 15% on the strength of tablet sales, despite traditional laptop and desktop computers posting more modest gains. Other categories currently performing well include Toys (up 21%), Consumer Packaged Goods (up 18%) and Video Game Consoles & Accessories (up 16%).
Top Gaining Product Categories for Holiday Season-to-Date Nov 1-30, 2012 vs. Corresponding Shopping Days in 2011 Total US - Home & Work Locations (Source: comScore, Inc)
Digital Content & Subscriptions
Consumer Packaged Goods
Video Game Consoles & Accessories
comScore comScore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR) is a global leader in measuring the digital world and the preferred source of digital marketing intelligence. Go to: http://www.comscore.com
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