Whether shoppers were still looking for that perfect gift or just procrastinating, specialty gift sites experienced their largest growth in traffic in the week just before Christmas, the Neilsen/NetRatings Holiday eCommerce Index reports.
Traffic to specialty gift sites nearly tripled in the week before Christmas compared to the last week in October, Nielsen/NetRatings’ baseline week for comparison purposes. Other sites saw peaks earlier in the season, with the computer hardware peak coming the week that ended Nov. 11. Not surprisingly, toy site traffic peaked the week ending Dec. 9, as parents wanted to make sure they could get the toys their children wanted in time for Christmas. Toys and games sites experienced 129% growth in their peak week vs. the baseline week.
Here is what Neilsen/NetRatings reports in peak week and growth:
|CATEGORIES||Category Peak Week Ending||Percent Growth During Peak Week|
|SPECIALTY GIFTS||Dec. 23||198%|
|TOYS & GAMES||Dec. 9||129%|
|HOME AND GARDEN||Dec. 16||95%|
|CONSUMER ELECTRONICS||Dec. 2||91%|
|SHOPPING AGGREGATORS||Dec. 2||76%|
|VIRTUAL DEPARTMENT STORES||Dec. 9||59%|
|VALUE-ORIENTED SITES||Dec. 9||34%|
|COMPUTER HARDWARE||Nov. 11||19%|
Interestingly, shopping remained strong the week after Christmas with sales dropping only 16% from the week ending Dec. 23 to the week ending Dec. 30. Sales in the comparable week in 200 fell 27%, Nielsen/NetRatings says.
Nielsen//NetRatings also reported the retail sites with the greatest growth over the previous year. Those sites were led by Columbia House, where traffic grew 219% to 25.8 million visitors in November and December 2001 vs. 7.9 million in November and December 2000.
Here is what Nielsen reported for shopping trips to sites:
|Site/Property||Shopping Trips (000) November and December 2000||Shopping Trips (000) November and December 2001||% Change|
|*Note: Amazon.com data includes ToysRus.com traffic.|
"Despite its already large market share, Amazon.com continues to exceed overall industry growth, further solidifying its leadership position,” said Sean Kaldor, vice president of analytical services. “In terms of sheer size, more shopping was conducted at Amazon.com than the other nine fastest growing e-retailers this holiday season."
The Nielsen//NetRatings index is comprised of five representative sites in each category.