December 15, 2010, 12:42 PM

Sunday marks eBay’s biggest mobile sales day—ever

Sunday’s U.S. mobile sales of $5 million beat Cyber Monday’s mobile sales by 38%.

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EBay is no stranger to big mobile sales. But this Sunday the online marketplace behemoth topped all of its previous records.

EBay’s U.S. mobile sales totaled $5 million on Sunday, up 127% from the same Sunday last year. Worldwide, mobile sales reached $13 million, up 165% compared to last year. Those numbers made Sunday eBay’s biggest mobile sales day ever.

“Mobile has transformed the shopping experience this holiday season,” says Steve Yankovich, vice president of mobile at eBay. “People simply prefer using a phone to shop smarter for everything from clothing, shoes and accessories to toys and sporting goods. With more than 30 million downloads of our mobile apps globally, we continue to drive mobile innovation around the globe.”

Sunday’s mobile sales also beat eBay’s mobile sales on Cyber Monday, the Monday after Thanksgiving, a day when many shoppers turn to the web to shop after the hectic Thanksgiving weekend. EBay’s U.S. mobile sales  of $5 million on Sunday were 38% higher than Cyber Monday’s $3.62 million.

Clothing and accessories ranked as Sunday’s top category for purchases via mobile devices in the U.S.—both in number of items sold and dollar value. The top five U.S. states by sales volume were California, Pennsylvania, Florida, Indiana and Ohio. The busiest mobile shopping hours on Sunday in the U.S. were between 1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. Eastern time, when eBay posted more than 9,500 transactions per hour on average.

Of the people who say they have used their smartphone to shop this holiday season, 26% have used their device to make a purchase, according to a study released today by the National Retail Federation. 32.5% are using their phones to receive text messages with special offers and 34.6% are reading what their peers are saying in customer reviews. Locating store hours or locations at 50.7% and browsing for gifts at 60.2% are the most popular ways mobile shoppers have used their phones so far over the holidays.

EBay recorded $600 million in mobile sales in 2009 and it predicts $1.5 billion for 2010.  Much of those sales will come from eBay’s numerous mobile apps. EBay has said it wants to launch apps for every occasion. It has a deals app, several foreign language apps and an app that offers only fashion-related items. EBay is also a pioneer in mobile technology. It got its feet wet with bar code scanning with its purchase this summer of bar code scanning app RedLaser. And it’s trying augmented reality—which uses the capabilities of a mobile phone to enhance a photographic presentation—with its fashion app that lets shoppers place clothing atop photos of themselves on phones.

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