A consumer study released by Adobe Digital Insights this week reported that online holiday shopping sales reached $65.14 billion between Nov. 1 and Dec. 5, which is a 14.7 percent increase over last year. Retailers generated approximately $1 billion a day in revenue in that same period.
And a significant portion of those sales is happening on mobile devices. Nearly half of online visits are coming from smartphones (40.3 percent) and tablets (8.5 percent) combined.
Adobe also found that the average order value online in that same period was $130, which is 0.6 percent less than the value last year.
Payments technology firm First Data concluded in a proprietary study released last week that consumers are shopping earlier and buying more this year.
It also found that in the nine days leading up to Black Friday, consumer spending grew by nearly 6 percent, year over year; over Thanksgiving weekend, spending grew by around 12 percent.
But are the good times poised to last for retailers? The housing shortage, a year of horrific natural disasters (including the fires in Southern California currently decimating the area), and the coming tax legislation, which will provide breaks for the very affluent, but may hike tax rates for others (under the Senate’s plan, personal exemptions will be eliminated, to name just one unpopular facet of the package), all loom large.
In a recent NBC News story on consumer spending this holiday, Bankrate.com senior economic analyst, Mark Hamrick asked a question retailers should also be pondering: “How sustainable is this level of consumer spending?”