E-commerce spending from desktop computers is up 10 percent over a year ago, according to comScore. Shoppers spent $42.8 million during the first 52 days of the November-December holiday season, compared to $38.9 million for the comparable period in 2012.
Still, those numbers fell short of projections.
"Our expectations for the online holiday shopping season anticipated that consumers would spend heavily later into the season out of necessity to make up for the highly compressed holiday shopping calendar this year," comScore Chairman Gian Fulgoni said in a news release. "Unfortunately that was not in the cards, as the final online shopping week saw considerably softer sales than anticipated, including zero billion-dollar spending days — although Monday and Tuesday came close."
Fulgoni said that strong momentum coming out of Thanksgiving, combined with heavy weekend buying, suggested that momentum would continue through the final week before Christmas. But the most recent week fell short of those expectations, he said.
"It looks like the final season growth rate will end up a few percentage points shy of what we had anticipated," he said. "In the end, I think we'll look back at this online holiday season as one where absolute dollar sales gains in consumer spending were held back by heavy retailer price discounting that occurred in an attempt to stimulate consumer demand; while at the same time, consumers weren't willing or able to increase their spending rate to fully compensate for the six-day shorter shopping period between Thanksgiving and Christmas."
For the holiday season-to-date, the report said, video game consoles and accessories were the top-gaining product category vs. a year ago, followed by apparel and accessories, consumer electronics (bolstered by smartphone sales), computer hardware (bolstered by tablet sales), and home and garden, comScore said.
Cyber Monday, with a record $1.735 billion in desktop spending, was the largest sales day this year, followed by Tuesday, Dec. 3, with $1.410 billion and Green Monday, Dec. 9, with $1.401 billion. The 2013 holiday season saw 10 days with more than $1 billion spending, down from last year's total of 12 individual days, reflecting the compressed calendar between Thanksgiving and Christmas that featured six fewer days of online shopping, according to comScore.
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