Holiday Online Spending Hits $17.5 Billion

During the first 42 days of the holiday season, total online retail spending (non-travel) reached $17.56 billion, a 24-percent increase versus the corresponding days in 2005, according to comScore Networks, which measures digital data.

The 24-percent increase has been consistent throughout the holiday season. The latest survey from the Reston, Virg.-based company measured seasonal data through Dec. 12. The data also revealed that consumers spent $661 million online on Dec. 11, a single-day record, topping a mark set on Nov. 27.

“Consumers’ online spending remains on target with comScore’s original forecast of 24-percent growth for the holiday season as a whole,” said Gian Fulgoni, chairman of comScore Networks. “Monday, December 11, represented yet another record-setting effort, as consumers spent $661 million online, up 19-percent versus the corresponding Monday last year. With growth rates for the beginning of this week slightly below expectations, it’s possible that we could see a greater share of spending shift to later in the week–and even into next week–since many online retailers are promising pre-Christmas deliveries for even later purchases this season.  Because shipping was so reliable last year, it’s conceivable that more consumers are opting to procrastinate this year.”

For the year, also ending Dec. 12, online (non-travel) spending reached $77.5 billion, a 24 percent increase over the same period of the prior year.