The final tally for online holiday shopping in 2009 is in: during the 56-day holiday shopping period between November 1 and December 24, U.S. consumers spent $27.1 billion online - a 5% bump from 2008 that was aided by a major snowstorm on the East Coast during the final shopping weekend of the season.
Mainly, though, online sales growth this year was driven by a continued increase in the number of people buying online, although consumers' economic challenges resulted in a slight decline versus last year in the amount spent per buyer, RetailerDaily writes, citing digital market research firm comScore new figures.
The season featured a strong start as a result of early retailer promotions and a strong finish helped by the snowstorms that occurred the weekend of December 19-20, retailers' willingness to offer free shipping later in the season, and consumers’ confidence in expedited shipping arriving in time.
Let It Snow
The final shopping weekend of the season, December 19-20, 2009, featured a strong 13% growth rate as online sales rose from $677 million during the final weekend before Christmas 2008 to $767 million. Snowstorms on the eastern seaboard prompted many consumers to finish their holiday shopping from the confines of their own homes.
The full week ending December 20, 2009 posted a year-over-year growth rate of 6% as it grew from $4.5 billion to a one-week sales record of roughly $4.8 billion in online spending.