Despite the economic downturn, e-commerce sales (including event and movie tickets) will grow about 11% to $156.1 billion this year, up from $141.3 billion in 2008, according to the State of Retailing Online 2009. E-commerce sales grew 13% from 2007 to 2008, and online sales will account for 6% of total retail sales this year, up from 5% last year. To retain customers, 53% of online retailers will use e-mails to feature online-only promotions while 55% will use e-mails to either extend invitations to participate in online surveys, highlight new product availability or to gather customer feedback.
With the holiday shopping season just around the corner, it is time once again for Zoomerang’s Annual Online Shopping Survey. This year’s study revealed that 22% of online shoppers had already begun shopping for the holidays prior to October 1, with the majority doing their online shopping between October 1 and December 10, 2009. Using Zoomerang’s Comparison Report feature to segment the survey results by gender, convenience was cited as the most important reason women are planning to shop online, while the ability to compare prices easily was the most motivating reason for men.
Additional highlights from the survey include:
– 18% of holiday shoppers plan to spend $501-$1,000+ online this year
– Ages 26-64 are the most popular recipients being shopped for online
– Electronics and accessories was the top holiday shopping category, followed by clothing and apparel with books and media placing third
If you are an online retailer, be sure to check Zoomerang’s Top 6 Tips for Your E-Commerce Website This Holiday Shopping Season, created to directly address the top concerns raised by online shoppers.
The benefits of online shopping are plentiful for both e-tailers and consumers. The convenience involved and extensive research capabilities for product reviews as well as best prices aside, my favorite aspect is the environmental benefits. Shoppers browsing online reduce fuel consumption and avoid the CO2 emissions associated with a single-occupancy trip to the store – every minute spent shopping online uses 20 times less energy than a minute spent driving to the mall. Shopping online also reduces the need for print catalogs and excess packaging plus downloadable items purchased online eliminate the need for any kind of material goods at all. Online shopping is clearly something we all can benefit from, whether we actually do so ourselves or not.