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E-Commerce Website Sales Up in 2010 Holiday Season

According to data released by MasterCard, online spending on e-commerce based websites rose by 17.6% in December 2010 when compared to the same period in December 2009. This represents one of the strongest growth rates ever seen in the industry.

The online shopping spree surged late in the holiday season, with strong sales being recorded across most sectors of retail. Some showed slight weaknesses, which was attributed to discounts rather than lack of online shopping. For example the electronics sector saw a 1.2% rise in sales offset by discounts on items such as TVs and laptops.

Overall apparel sales were also up 10.9%, while luxury sales went up by 8.5% over the same period in 2009. The biggest boost for both of these was the online sector, with apparel sales online rising by 28.8% over December 2009.

Mike Berry, director of industry research at MasterCard SpendingPulse, said “Anything that keeps people out of brick and mortar stores – if they’re still in the mood to spend, they’re going to gravitate to the e-commerce channel. We put some of the iffy weather with the good deals…that adds to a pretty good season.”

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