Top E-Tailers of August 1999

US consumer buying on Internet retail sites rebounded in August after a slight decline in July, according to PC Data Online. PC Data’s latest figures for Web purchasing among US households show an average of 4.5 percent of visitors to the top 40 online retail sites purchased items in August, returning to June levels after dropping to 3.2 percent in July.

Leading online retailer Amazon.com retained its top rank with 789,000 projected home-based buyers. Buy.com jumped to the No. 2 position with a projected 314,000 visitors completing purchases. In August, buyers accounted for 12.1 percent of Buy.com’s home-based traffic, up from 6.7 percent in July, while overall traffic increased by more than 50 percent. Barnesandnoble.com ranked third with 289,000 projected buyers.

Drugstore sites had another strong showing in August, with planetrx.com, drugstore.com, and mothernature.com among the top 10 buying sites. More than one out of 10 visitors to these drugstore sites bought something in August.

“Consumers are embracing the Internet as a way to buy products that don’t require hands-on evaluation. We’ve seen this with the success of Internet book and CD sales, and it appears that the drugstore sites have tapped this same vein,” said Internet research analyst Cameron Meierhoefer. “In addition, consumers love a deal, and the steep discounts and coupons these sites have been offering to attract customers may have a lot to do with their recent popularity.”

Internet retail sites are defined as Web sites where visitors can actually purchase products. They include neither shopping domains that provide free downloads, product reviews, or purchasing incentives such as coupons, nor other types of e-commerce sites such as auction, travel reservation, or financial service sites.

PC Data Online estimates the purchase rate based on the number of unique home-based Web users who visit a transaction-related page within each site. The information is gathered through a proprietary software tool that tracks unique visitors and unique buyers on each Web site. Every visitor is counted only once, regardless of how many times the individual visits a site or buys from a site. This sample includes 67,000 home Internet users.

Top 20 E-Tailers of August 1999
Average Time Spent
(hh:mm)
Rank Site Projected No.
of Purchasers

(000)
Reach
(%)
Unique Users
(000)
Purchase
Rate

(%)
Purchaser Non-Purchaser
1. amazon.com 789 17.6 11,162 7.1 0:53 0:12
2. buy.com 314 4.1 2,586 12.1 0:59 0:11
3. barnesandnoble.com 289 6.1 3,871 7.5 0:49 0:06
4. ticketmaster.com 269 3.4 2,139 12.6 0:33 0:08
5. planetrx.com 256 2.6 1,655 15.5 0:38 0:07
6. mothernature.com 241 3.0 1,910 12.6 0:32 0:06
7. drugstore.com 191 1.7 1,082 17.6 0:32 0:06
8. gateway.com 167 3.6 2,248 7.4 0:42 0:10
9. cdnow.com 95 8.5 5,389 1.8 1:22 0:20
10. smarterkids.com 93 2.7 1,734 5.4 0:30 0:03
11. chipshot.com 80 0.6 382 21.0 0:12 1:00
12. hallmark.com 80 1.0 610 13.1 0:31 0:05
13. egghead.com 73 2.6 1,614 4.5 0:34 0:08
14. yahoo.com 67 49.8 31,497 0.2 2:20 2:41
15. officemax.com 65 1.6 1,030 6.3 0:21 0:10
16. etoys.com 57 1.7 1,101 5.2 1:10 0:10
17. jcrew.com 52 1.7 1,105 4.7 0:41 0:04
18. spree.com 52 3.4 2,155 2.4 1:32 0:17
19. compaq.com 51 1.9 1,227 4.2 0:22 0:16
20. towerrecords.com 43 1.9 290 4.2 1:11 0:07
Source: PC Data Online

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