2011 Holiday Season in Review

According to comScore, the sales period from November 1st – December 25th 2011 experienced a 15 percent increase in sales over the same period in 2010. Although the numbers aren’t in yet, The National Retail Federation is expecting total online sales to be up approximately 3.8 percent over last year’s holiday shopping season.

comScore speculates that the increased spending could be related to the increase in consumer spending and borrowing. Increased spending could also be tied to the report recently released by the Federal Government that found that borrowing on installment loan debt like credit cards and car loans rose at a seasonal adjusted rate of 9.9 percent in November. That is the largest monthly increase since November 2001.

An increase in spending could also be tied to aggressive promotional campaigns that started earlier than ever. As expected, free shipping offers dominated the percentage of e-commerce transactions with 56 percent of purchases being free shipping offers; this is up from a 50-50 split in 2010. Free shipping purchases also had higher order totals with an average order value of $118. Non free shipping orders averaged $100 in 2011.

A fairly significant shift in time of day for spending on Cyber Monday occurred in 2011 as well. A higher percentage of sales occurred before 9am and after 5pm than in 2010. As a result, workday spending between 9-5 decreased by 19 percent when compared to 2010.

To ready the complete report by comScore, click here.

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