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Online Sales Up!


The Galleria, Houston TX
Flickr Photo courtesy “mlsnp”
November 2007

Christmas sales are over and the After-Christmas sales are underway, but the news is already out for online sales. It’s a good news—bad news story.

Good News

The good news is that online sales increased to $29.5 billion, a 19% increase from last year. I haven’t seen any breakdowns on these figures, but I am interested in the answers to a couple of things.

First, how did the online versions of brick & mortar stores perform—Barnes and Noble, Toys R Us, etc.—against internet marketing giant Amazon? What part of the increase came from established retail chains for this year’s shopping? I haven’t seen those numbers yet. Second, how did Internet-only stores’ online sales compare to sales last year … in volume and percentage?

Internet sales figures increase, but rate slows | – Houston Chronicle
When the receipts are tallied from this holiday, American consumers will have spent around $29.5 billion at Internet shops, according to projections published by comScore, a market research firm.

“The growth rates for previous years were clearly much higher,” said Andrew Lipsman, spokesman for comScore. The research firm did not have growth rates before 2003, but Lipsman suspected that they were 25 percent or more.

It also is far higher than the rate of growth in offline sales, according to preliminary projections.

Bad News

It seems that no good news is delivered without some caveat of bad news. The only bad news the press could muster this year was the decrease in the percentage of increase of sales. I know the previous sentence needs diagramming, so let me rephrase the statement.

Sales are up! but not as much up as they were up the year before. Got that? While normal retailers struggle to increase sales each year, online sales climbed by double digits.

I wonder how long this trend can continue? As people get more comfortable with purchasing products from online merchants, I think the growth will continue.

What do you think?

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