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Online Retailers Ready Shoppers For Holidays

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Holiday shopping this year looks to be going better than ever according to metrics released by Nielsen/NetRatings. Their eShopping Index saw a 29% increase from home on the day after Thanksgiving, garnering 17.2 million users over 100 online retailers.

The numbers of users, up from the 13.3 million last year, show major increases of the growing influence of online retailers and the importance they represent in the retail environment.

Heather Dougherty, senior retail analyst, Nielsen//NetRatings, told the Center for Media Research, “… while many shoppers headed out to the stores over the (Thanksgiving) weekend, the majority first turned to the Internet to check prices and product availability.”

eBay was the top online retailer with 9.5 million visitors. Amazon was second with 4.6 million followed by Wal-Mart with 3.4 million. The top 10 list was rounded out by Target at 2.9 million, Best Buy at 2.1 million, Overstock at 1.9 million, Circuit City at 1.8 million, Dell at 1.6 million, Shopping.com at 1.5 million and Shopzilla.com at 1.3 million.

The next big question might well be, “What were people buying?” The answer by far is toys, video games, consumer electronics and computer hardware and software. The toy/video game segment increased 151.8% from November 18th to November 25th. Consumer electronics was up 142% and hardware/software 101%.

“The toys and video games experiences the largest increases in traffic were fueled by the Xbox 360 and the continued popularity of portable game consoles. The consumer electronics and computer hardware categories also attracted holiday shoppers to the web to research and purchase this years hottest gift items, including flat-screen TV’s, iPods and other MP3 players,” said Dougherty. “Price slashing heavy demand will drive significant sales in these categories this holiday season.”

John Stith is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business.

Online Retailers Ready Shoppers For Holidays
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