According to a new comScore forecast, 2012 will see an increase in the amount of eCommerce sales this holiday season. The research company is predicting eCommerce sales in the United States will increase 17% this holiday season to $43 billion over last year’s mark, which saw a 15% gain during November and December.
The 2012 online shopping season is already off to a good start as the first week and a half of November saw eCommerce shopping increase 16% to $10 billion. Two reasons why 2012’s eCommerce shopping is on the upswing is higher consumer confidence and early retailer promotions. In fact, consumer confidence is at a five-year high as shoppers start preparing for their holiday shopping needs. According to Thomson Reuters and the University of Michigan, the index of consumer confidence as increased to 84.9% from 82.6%.
Another contributing factor to the increased revenue projections for eCommerce shopping this holiday season is the fact that Black Friday, the biggest shopping day of the year, was two days earlier than in 2011, providing an extended holiday shopping season. With two additional shopping days on the calendar this year, it only makes sense that eCommerce shopping figures would increase.
While other eCommerce shopping forecasters agree with comScore’s forecast that eCommerce spending will increase in 2012, these forecasters do not agree that eCommerce shopping will increase as much as comScore suggests. Shop.org is only projecting a 12% increase in eCommerce shopping based on data collected from the U.S. Department of Commerce while Gartner is also only projecting a 12% increase in online sales.
In their forecast, Gartner also projects 51% of consumers will shop online during the holiday season. With the increased number of people shopping online and taking advantage of the deals being provided by online retailers, JPMorgan is predicting eCommerce sales to increase 19% in the fourth quarter across both desktop and mobile devices. In addition to these increased eCommerce sales figures, JPMorgan expects “showrooming” – the process of going to the store to look at different products and then returning home to buy them online – to increase to its highest levels ever as 37% of consumers will browse products in the store.
This perfect storm of higher consumer confidence, more shopping days in the holiday season and increased number of consumers who will make a purchase online during the holiday season will see eCommerce shopping figures continue their upward trend in 2012.