December online jewelry sales reach $172 million

Total U.S. spending on online sales increased 11.5% from $4.9 billion in November to $5.7 billion in December. The number of households shopping online increased to 18.7 million in December, from 16.8 million in November, reports a survey by Forrester Research in conjunction with Greenfield Online, Wilton, Conn. Consumers spent an average of $304 per person in December, compared with $293 in November.

Jewelry increased by 14.7% from $117 million in November to nearly $172 million in December, the monthly survey reports.

In addition, owing to changes in the methodology, Forrester, Cambridge, Mass., revised monthly online sales figures for 2000 to reflect more accurately the total number of online shoppers who were buying throughout the year. Total online retail sales for 2000 reached $42.4 billion, while December 2000 online retail sales came to $5 billion.

“We realized we had overestimated the number of shoppers that had been projected in the latter part of 2000. Once the 2000 sales figures were amended, it supported our previous analysis that online sales were up from last year,” said Christopher M. Kelley, analyst