September 28, 2005, 12:00 AM

More growth ahead, Forrester predicts

Consumers` continued enthusiasm for shopping on the web is expected to push online retail sales in the U.S., excluding travel and auctions, to $210 billion in 2010 from $110 billion this year, Forrester says in "U.S. eCommerce: 2005 to 2010."

General merchandise online sales in the U.S. will top $100 billion this year, a critical milestone and a fitting start for online retail’s second decade, according to a new report from Forrester Research.

Consumers’ continued enthusiasm for shopping on the web is expected to push online retail sales in the U.S., excluding travel and auctions, to $210 billion in 2010 from $110 billion this year, Forrester says in U.S. eCommerce: 2005 to 2010, its annual update on e-commerce sales projections. By 2010, Forrester expects e-commerce to account for 9% of total retail sales.

Categories expected to show above average compounded annual growth over the next 5 years include apparel (16%), consumer electronics (15%), health and beauty (22%), home products (16%), and sporting goods (16%). In comparison, overall online sales, including auctions and travel, are expected to grow at a compounded annual rate of 14%.

Although the growth in online shopping households is slowing-nearly two-thirds of online households already have made online purchases-the slowdown should have little impact on the growth of online sales, Forrester says.

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