December 22, 2003, 12:00 AM

Online spending continues on a rocket, up 31% for week ended Dec. 14

Online retail spending continued in high gear last week, reaching $1.88 billion through Friday, up 31% vs. a year ago, reports comScore. The week’s spending follows two weeks in which spending exceeded $2 billion.

Kurt Peters

Executive Editor

Online retail spending continued in high gear last week, reaching $1.88 billion through Friday, up 31% vs. the corresponding week a year ago, reports comScore Networks Inc.

ComScore reports that surveys earlier in the season revealed that many consumers not only expected to find the lowest prices in the final days toward Christmas, but also were prepared to withhold a significant portion of their spending until that point. “We`re seeing that dynamic reflected in daily sales levels consistently over $200 million in the past week--an impressive showing at this point of the season," says Dan Hess, senior vice president of comScore.

The week’s spending follows two weeks in which spending exceeded $2 billion, the first time e-retail spending has reached that level.

"As the season rounds third, online retail continues to perform at the high end of our expected range,” Hess says. “With actual season-to-date growth of 29% over last year, the total season is on track to ring in at the high end of our forecast of 25 to 30% growth.” comScore forecasts online retail spending in November and December of $12.1-$12.6 billion, up 25-30% from $9.7 billion last year.

ComScore also reports strong growth in online travel spending for the week that ended Dec. 14, when such spending reached $800 million, up 61% from $496 million a year earlier.

Internet traffic monitoring company Hitwise also reported that as a percentage of all U.S. Internet traffic, traffic to retail web sites increased by 3.02% for the week ending Dec. 13.

 

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