comScore, Inc.'s Q3 2010 U.S. retail e-commerce sales estimates show that online retail spending reached $32.1 billion for the quarter, up 9 percent versus year ago. This growth rate represented the fourth consecutive quarter of positive year-over-year growth following a year of flat or negative growth rates.
"Retail e-commerce growth in the third quarter remained solid at 9 percent, a fairly positive indicator for the upcoming holiday season," says comScore chairman Gian Fulgoni. "However, we continue to preach caution due to the continuation of high unemployment, which is creating very divergent spending patterns between the 'haves' and the 'have nots.' Even Americans who do have jobs still aren't confident enough to spend freely and many are still pained by their loss of wealth since the financial crisis struck in 2008. That and a higher consumer savings rate leaves less money for spending. Until the economy begins adding jobs at a meaningful rate, the lack of spending power among consumers will continue to be a drag on purchasing, with many consumers indicating their intention to cut back on gift buying this holiday season."
Other highlights from Q3 2010 include:
- The top-performing online product categories were Books & Magazines (excl. digital downloads), Computers/Peripherals/PDAs, Computer Software (excl. PC Games) and Consumer Electronics, indicating a higher willingness of consumers to spend on in-home entertainment.
- The top 25 online retailers accounted for 70 percent of dollars spent online, up 5.5 percentage points vs. year ago. Online "pureplay" retailers accounted for 58 percent of dollars spent online compared to 42 percent among multichannel retailers, unchanged vs. year ago.
- 41 percent of online retail transactions included free shipping, down marginally from last year.
Retail E-Commerce (Non-Travel) Growth Rates Excludes Auctions, Autos and Large Corporate Purchases Total U.S. â‚¬" Home/Work/University Locations Source: comScore, Inc.
Quarter E-Commerce Spending ($ Millions) Y/Y Percent Change
Q1 2007 $27,970 17%
Q2 2007 $27,176 23%
Q3 2007 $28,411 23%
Q4 2007 $39,132 19%
Q1 2008 $31,178 11%
Q2 2008 $30,581 13%
Q3 2008 $30,274 6%
Q4 2008 $38,071 -3%
Q1 2009 $31,031 0%
Q2 2009 $30,169 -1%
Q3 2009 $29,552 -2%
Q4 2009 $39,045 3%
Q1 2010 $33,984 10%
Q2 2010 $32,942 9%
Q3 2010 $32,133 9%