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Online Retail Spending Grows By A Quarter In '05

Consumers' online retail spending finished 24 percent higher in 2005, totaling $81.6 billion, according to measurement firm comScore Networks. For the first time, sales never fell below $1 billion on any given week in 2005. The two highest grossing weeks came--not surprisingly--in back-to-back weeks in mid-December, when total spending exceeded $3 billion two weeks in a row. These were also the highest grossing weeks of 2004. In fact, the two lowest grossing weeks of 2005 were also the same in 2004: the first two weeks of July. ComScore also reports that 2006 is off to a solid start: online sales increased 33 percent in the first three weeks of January to $5.5 billion from $4.1 billion a year ago. In the same period, online travel spending increased a modest 8 percent, to $3.4 billion.

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