E-commerce remains the leading channel for consumers’ holiday purchases.
According to comScore data, from Nov. 1 to Dec. 18, shoppers spent $55.2 billion online, which is a 13 percent increase from last year.
In particular, the week before Christmas was the catalyst for digital sales success, with a total of $7.6 billion spent on holiday purchases. Free Shipping Day on Dec. 16 also racked up $967 million, marking 22 consecutive days of at least $1 billion in online desktop sales.
“While the corresponding shopping week last year tailed off in the end, due to it falling two days closer to Christmas, this year we saw strong growth through Free Shipping Day, with four billion-dollar spending days and a notable weekend surge as consumers rushed to get their online orders in with enough time to ship their gifts before the holiday,” comScore CEO Gian Fulgoni said. “The heaviest spending days of the season are now behind us, but there is still another $7 billion to $8 billion that will be spent over the balance of the year that will once again get us to new all-time highs for desktop e-commerce.”
This uptick in digital sales demonstrates how consumers, more than ever, are using their computers for holiday season purchases. As more shopping channels become available, shoppers are actively using digital devices over brick-and-mortar for presents. Analysts predicted that online shoppers would spend an average of $710 for the 2016 holiday season, which was 60 percent more money than those that only shopped at physical stores. Shoppers also pursued deeper discounts for the holidays, decreasing their spending in stores on Black Friday and allocating most of their budgets to Cyber Monday.
As the holidays wrap up, it is expected that online purchases will continue to climb from the end of December to early January.