ComScore: Amazon growth doubled the rest of the e-commerce market in Q4

Amazon announced the company’s fourth quarter results last week, which fell short of Wall Street’s estimates. The company reported $17.4 billion in revenue, with net sales up 35% from $12.95 billion in the same quarter of 2010. Despite falling short of analyst estimates of $18.26 billion, Amazon’s growth was more than twice the overall market’s growth according to data from comScore. At $49.6 million, U.S. retail spending was only up 14% in the fourth quarter of 2011. “The growth rate represented the ninth consecutive quarter of positive year-over-year growth and fifth consecutive quarter of double-digit growth rates,” said the company’s press release. “For the entire 2011 year, U.S. retail e-commerce spending reached a record $161.5 billion, marking a 13-percent increase from 2010.” Read on for comScore’s full press release.

comScore Reports $50 Billion in Q4 2011 U.S. Retail E-Commerce Spending, Up 14 Percent vs. Year Ago

Spending Reaches $161.5 Billion for Full Year 2011 Marking 13 Percent Gain
comScore Chairman Gian Fulgoni to Present Update on Q4 2011 E-Commerce Trends in Upcoming Webinar

RESTON, VA, February 6, 2012 – comScore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR), a leader in measuring the digital world, today released its Q4 2011 U.S. retail e-commerce sales estimates, which showed that online retail spending reached $49.7 billion for the quarter, up 14 percent versus year ago. This growth rate represented the ninth consecutive quarter of positive year-over-year growth and fifth consecutive quarter of double-digit growth rates. For the entire 2011 year, U.S. retail e-commerce spending reached a record $161.5 billion, marking a 13-percent increase from 2010.

Retail E-Commerce (Non-Travel) Growth Rates Excludes Auctions, Autos and Large Corporate Purchases Total U.S. – Home & Work Locations Source: comScore, Inc.
Quarter E-Commerce Spending ($ Millions) Y/Y Percent Change
Q1 2007 $27,970 17%
Q2 2007 $27,176 23%
Q3 2007 $28,441 23%
Q4 2007 $39,132 19%
Q1 2008 $31,178 11%
Q2 2008 $30,581 13%
Q3 2008 $30,274 6%
Q4 2008 $38,071 -3%
Q1 2009 $31,031 0%
Q2 2009 $30,169 -1%
Q3 2009 $29,552 -2%
Q4 2009 $39,045 3%
Q1 2010 $33,984 10%
Q2 2010 $32,942 9%
Q3 2010 $32,133 9%
Q4 2010 $43,432 11%
Q1 2011 $38,002 12%
Q2 2011 $37,501 14%
Q3 2011 $36,308 13%
Q4 2011 $49,698 14%

“The fourth quarter of 2011 capped off what was yet another strong year for online retail, one in which every quarter achieved double-digit increases versus the prior year,” said comScore chairman Gian Fulgoni. “In the face of continuing uncertainty regarding the U.S. economy, consumers increasingly went online for their shopping needs. Price and convenience continue to be the critical value drivers for e-commerce, and unless those conditions change we can expect to see more channel-shifting to online in 2012 and perhaps even an acceleration in the current growth trend.” Other highlights from Q4 2011 include:

  • The top-performing online product categories were: Digital Content & Subscriptions, Jewelry & Watches, Consumer Electronics, Toys & Hobbies, and Computer Software. Each category grew at least 18 percent vs. year ago.
  • Ten individual days in Q4 surpassed $1 billion in online spending, led by Cyber Monday (Nov. 28) at $1.251 billion. Monday, Dec. 5 ranked second at $1.178 billion, followed by Green Monday (Dec. 12) at $1.133 billion.
  • 52 percent of e-commerce transactions included free shipping, representing an all-time high. The previous high was Q4 2010 at 49 percent.
  • Smartphones and tablets played a growing role in online shopping, with consumers increasingly using smartphones to check prices and product features while physically in a retail store.
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