Although foot traffic at U.S. retailers last weekend took a hit due to holiday snowstorms, trapped inside took to the Web. Online retail sales rose 22.4% for the weekend compared with last year, according to a report by the Associated Press, which cited research from Web research firm Coremetrics. On Saturday, sales were up 24.8% alone.
Coremetrics research also found that the average shopper spent and ordered more on Saturday, when the weather's effects were deepest, than Friday. The surge continued on Monday; morning sales were strong as shoppers raced to make purchases so they could be delivered by Christmas.
As a result, online retailers are leveraging the spike. Many have extended the cutoff for standard shipping.
Now, what to make of these stats? This quote sums it up nicely: "This teaches consumers that maybe those of us that procrastinate, we still have time to go online very close to Christmas," John Squire, Coremetrics' chief strategy officer, told AP.