Moms are important! comScore Networks released the first review of Internet activity in the days and weeks leading up to Mother's Day 2002, reporting impressive year-over-year growth in both traffic and sales in the online Flower and Gift category, as well as a dramatic increase in the share of online floral purchases made by men in the final days leading up to May 12th.
Sales of online flowers for the seven days ending Sunday, May 12th, 2002 totaled $76.6 million. This spike in online flower sales represents an increase of 390% over the average week to date in 2002. In addition, this level is 18% higher than the week ending Mother's Day (May 13th) 2001. As the holiday grew closer, the share of online Flower & Gift purchases by men grew sharply, from a total of 32% in the week ending May 5th to an eleventh-hour spike of 81% on Mother's Day itself.
"It would appear that women planned Mother's Day gift-giving a bit earlier," noted Hess. " for those who delayed - mostly men, to be fair - the Web came to the rescue. And in an interesting twist, these shoppers spent more on their last-minute bouquets. Whether this is driven by guilt, generosity or both, moms win in the end."
Online Greeting sites showed their strength too, this Mothers' Day, with the total number of visits to several leading greeting sites up more than 10% in the month-to-date versus last year - even with the addition of subscription fees at some sites.
Although Web activity slows over a typical weekend, online Greetings ran counter to this rule, with significant increases on Sunday, both versus the average Sunday and the average day during the preceding week. On Mother's Day, americangreetings.com drew the largest overall audience, with 1.1 million unique U.S. visitors; bluemountain.com was the growth leader, with audience growth of 386% compared to an average Sunday. Despite last minute buying by some consumers, the greatest overall surge in visiting activity at online Florist sites came during the week preceding Mother's Day. 1-800-flowers.com sustained much of its traffic gain into the weekend, with nearly a quarter-million unique visitors on Saturday, May 11th alone. However, proflowers.com and ftd.com - also strong sites in the category - posted their strongest traffic during the preceding weekdays.
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