E-commerce sales during the most recent work week (December 8-12) declined a marginal 1%, although December 9 emerged as the highest online spending day on record, accounting for $887 million in sales, according to comScore, writes Retailer Daily.
Previously, Green Monday of last year (December 10, 2007) was the heaviest online spending day on record.
Tracking holiday season retail e-commerce spending for the first 42 days of the November-December 2008 holiday season, comScore said $19.44 billion has been spent online through December 12 – essentially the same level as the corresponding days last year.
Moreover, for the 12 days beginning with December 1 (Cyber Monday), the kick-off to the heaviest part of the online shopping season, sales totaled $8.26 billion, up 3% from a year ago.
“With Christmas now fast approaching, look for online retailers to continue to offer enticing last-minute deals, including discounts on expedited shipping, to spur a final wave of spending,” said comScore chairman Gian Fulgoni.
“In fact, some retailers are even willing to offer free shipping as late as December 18 this year with a guarantee that the shipment will arrive by Christmas Eve. It will be interesting to see the impact that this offer has in terms of pulling additional spending from retail stores to the online channel.”
Top Retail Categories since Cyber Monday
The fastest-growing product categories during the period from December 1 through December 12 were Apparel & Accessories (up 21%), Books & Magazines (up 18%), and Flowers, Greetings & Gift (up 18%).
Apparel & Accessories, the second-largest online retail category by dollar sales, has seen sales growth as a result of aggressive discounting and unseasonably cold weather across many parts of the country.
Following a strong week of Cyber Monday that was driven by large discounts on products such as flat screen TVs, sales of consumer electronics have slowed in the most recent week.
The softest retail categories include Music, Movies & Videos (down 25%) and Office Supplies (down 33%).
Holiday Online Retail Summary