Oct 24, 2008

Business - US;Online sales to Top Stores for Holidays,per eMarketer

Consumers are strapped for cash this holiday shopping season and retailers with the best deals will capture the dollars spent -- especially online, according to eMarketer.

This year, online holiday sales (excluding travel) will total $32.1 billion, up slightly more than 10 percent over 2007. This is a sharp decline from growth rates in the low-to-mid 20 percent range seen over the past few years.

The weak economy is placing downward pressure on e-commerce sales this season. That pressure accentuates the already declining sales growth, which is a sign of the maturation of the online shopping channel.

Shoppers will shift a larger share of their purchases from stores to the Internet to save gas money and avail themselves of retailers' free shipping offers.

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