Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Check Out Line: Online shopping woes

December 31, 2008

Check Out the drop in online sales.
Even online retailers are ready for 2008 to end. After we heard about the abysmal holiday season at stores, comScore said online sales for the holiday period up to Dec. 23 dropped 3 percent. It was the first decline in online spending since comScore started tracking online sales in 2001.
The end of 2008 will also mark the first quarter that online sales fell. From Oct. 1 through Dec. 28 e-commerce spending fell 4 percent to $36.8 billion, according to comScore. 
CIRCUITCITY/So who were the biggest winners and losers in December? Through Dec. 24, Hewlett Packard‘s online traffic in the U.S. rose 28 percent to more than 19.4 million unique visitors.  Apple, with more than 35 million visitors, saw its traffic rise 19 percent.  Meanwhile, traffic to Circuit City‘s site fell 21 percent.  Presumably shoppers were spooked after it filed for bankruptcy protection and said it would shut some stores. Dell‘s traffic was down 17 percent.  EBay was still the most popular site, though its traffic fell 4 percent to 85.4 million visitors.

Also in the basket:

Jobless claims drop by much more than expected

China dairy boss pleads guilty in melamine case

Bratz dolls to get reprieve, manufacturer says

Walmart Pulls Out of Nielsen’s PRISM (Advertising Age)

(Reuters photo)


Increased number of visitors may indicate but does not necessarily translate into increased sales (figures for those?). Consumers may be just ‘window shopping’ or comparing prices even more carefully than they used to.

Posted by MW | Report as abusive

I agree with MW. The internet is bringing more people/shoppers online; and overall, internet traffic has increased across the board. But presently the country (and world) is facing tough economical times, which means more frugal attitudes towards shopping online or even by traditional means. So, for now, more internet traffic does not necessarily mean more online sales, but that will change of course, when the economy picks back up.

Posted by MC | Report as abusive

Very True. I agree with MW.
These are Just STATS. There is a difference between “Traffic” and “Valid Traffic”. Traffic is good only for Adsense,May not necessarily convert into sales.
Especially with Ongoing economic crisis,which has forced most of stores to give shopping discount.Still they are not able to maintain sales.
I Fear,Many such stores may shut down in next 1 year.


the above comments are absolutely true..just logging into a website, doesn’t indicate great sales…One should check the profits before drawing any conclusions..


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