Online Holiday Shopping Tops $30 Billion in the U.S.

Paul Lilly

Tis the season to spend, spend, and spend some more, and it doesn't look like online shoppers are having any trouble doing that, and then some. According to Internet marketing research company comScore, holiday retail e-commerce spending for the first 46 days of the November to December 2011 season is $30.9 billion to date, up 15 percent compared to the same period one year ago.

In the most recent week alone, consumers spent more than $1 billion online on four separate days, with Green Monday (Monday December 12) at $1.13 billion and Free Shipping Day (Friday, December 16) at $1.07 billion the two biggest shopping days of last week.

"More than $1 billion in spending on Free Shipping Day put the exclamation point on what will almost certainly be the heaviest week of the online holiday shopping season," said comScore chairman Gian Fulgoni . "Four individual days surpassed $1 billion in spending this week, with Green Monday leading the way at $1.13 billion. While next week may see another strong day or two at the beginning of the week, it’s clear that we have now reached the crescendo for this season and that spending will begin to slow as we get closer to Christmas, leaving Cyber Monday as the top ranked shopping day for the second year in a row."

It appears that holiday deals, such as discounts and free shipping promotions, were frontloaded during the earlier portion of the holiday season, a decision that paid off big time.

"Free shipping is undoubtedly one of the most important incentives for consumers and has become a key driver of online buying activity over the past few years," Fulgoni added.

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