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2005 Holiday E-Shopping Exceeds Last Year's

  |  December 12, 2005   |  Comments

This holiday season, books, music, and video are the highest-growing category over last year's shopping season.

Consumers are increasingly going online this holiday season. Data from Nielsen//NetRatings's Holiday eShopping Index shows a 33 percent increase over last year.

Weekly shopping sessions at online retailers rose from 348.3 million over the holidays last year to 462.5 million in 2005. The increase is a 33 percent jump over the 2004 holiday season.

"Both new and experienced Internet buyers are not only researching products and comparing prices online before making a purchase, but they are also finding good holiday discounts online," said Heather Dougherty, senior retail analyst, Nielsen//NetRatings.

Week six of the 2005 holiday shopping season (December 4-10) experienced a 33 percent year-over-year gain over week six of last year (December 5-11).

Books, music, and video combined are the fastest growing category, with a 238 percent increase over last year. Dougherty attributes the growth to a vast selection of titles released during the holidays.

Toys and video games make the combined fastest-growing online retail category for the current holiday season, beginning October 30. Toy and video game buys online account for 149 percent growth from week one to week six. Flowers and gifts grew 117 percent; and consumer electronics grew 90 percent.

The Holiday eShopping Index looks at over 100 representative online retailers across 10 categories.

U.S. Home and Work Online Shopping Trips by Retail Category, 2004 and 2005
Category Week Ending 12/04/2005 Week Ending 12/05/2004 Growth (%)
Books/music/video 45,945 13,594 238
Apparel 17,186 12,498 38
Home and garden 12,325 9,592 28
Toys/video games 11,283 8,795 28
Retail 262,121 204,805 28
Consumer electronics 24,880 19,614 27
Computer hardware/software 27,129 22,228 22
Flowers and gifts 6,216 5,154 21
Shopping comparison/portals 53,078 49,277 8
Total 462,468 348,267 33
Source: Nielsen//NetRatings, December 2005

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Enid Burns

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