December 5, 2008, 12:00 AM

Traffic to European retail sites is up, but not to 2007 holiday levels

The online holiday shopping season is well underway, not just in the U.S., but in Europe as well, web measurement firm comScore Inc reports. But European consumers are visiting online retail sites less often than they did at this time last year.

The online holiday shopping season is well underway, not just in the U.S., but in Europe as well, web measurement firm comScore Inc reports. But European consumers are visiting online retail sites less often than they did at this time last year.

Traffic to retail sites in the U.K. and Germany was up 10% and 11%, respectively, in November compared to the average traffic in September and October, and unique visitors to French e-commerce sites was up 6%. Yet, while e-retailers in Europe are seeing a holiday spike, traffic levels are lower than they were in November 2007.

Visits to e-retail sites in the U.K are down 10% for November compared to a year earlier, down 7% for Germany, and 2% for France.

ComScore offered the following breakdown of increases in traffic to retail sites for the U.K., France and Germany for each week in November compared with the average amount of traffic to retail sites in September and October.

  • Week 1, (Nov 3 - Nov 9), 13%, 8%, 10%
  • Week 2, (Nov 10 – Nov 16), 13%, 5%, 10%
  • Week 3, (Nov 17 – Nov 23), 10%, 6%, 15%
  • Week 4, (Nov 24 – Nov 30), 3%, 6%, 10%
  • November Average, 10%, 6%, 11%

ComScore offered the following breakdown of traffic to the top five online retailers in the U.K. in November compared to the average of September and October 2008 and the average for November 2007.

  • Retail in general, 10%, -10%
  • eBay, 9%, -20%
  • Amazon Sites, 28%, -21%
  • Apple Inc., 8%, -8%
  • Home Retail Group, 49%, -16%
  • Tesco Stores, 21%, -28%

ComScore offered the following breakdown of traffic to the top five online retailers in France in November compared to the average of September and October 2008 and the average for November 2007.

  • Retail in general, 6%, -2%
  • eBay, 9%, -3%
  • Groupe PPR, 21%, -6%
  • Groupe PriceMinister, 26%, N/A
  • Apple Inc., 9%, 7%
  • Otto Gruppe, 4%, 2%

ComScore notes that Christmas shopping in France traditionally begins a bit later in the year than in the rest of Europe.

ComScore offered the following breakdown of traffic to the top five online retailers in Germany in November compared to the average of September and October 2008 and the average for November 2007.

  • Retail in general, 11%, -7%
  • eBay, 8%, -18%
  • Arcandor AG, 18%, N/A
  • Otto Gruppe, 28%, -10%
  • Amazon Sites, 21%, -15%
  • Apple Inc., 22%, 10%

ComScore says this data excludes traffic from public computers such as Internet cafes or access from mobile phones or PDAs.

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