A fast start to the holiday shopping season might make some online sales projections look conservative.
Adobe earlier this month predicted that shoppers would spend $107.4 billion during the holiday period of Nov. 1-Dec. 31. Based on online sales Adobe has tracked so far, U.S. shoppers are on pace to spend $109.3 billion this year.
That $109.3 billion figure would represent year-over-year growth of 15.8% for the November-December period compared with last year’s $94.4 billion in online sales. Adobe earlier this month forecast growth for those two months at 13.8%.
Adobe gets its data from analyzing transactions from the 100 largest online retailers in the Internet Retailer 2017 Top 500 as well as more than 1 trillion visits to more than 4,500 e-commerce sites. Adobe in 2017 adjusted its forecast modeling to more accurately predict and project actual retail spending because “major discount days have impacted online shopping behaviors significantly,” it says. The changes resulted in a revision to its 2016 online sales number to $94.4 billion from $91.7 billion when it released its 2017 projection.
Another sign of an early uptick is evident in traffic to online retailers’ websites.
Traffic began to substantially increase Nov. 8 (a Wednesday) and it’s been climbing steadily higher for the more than 1,000 e-commerce retailers that use Yottaa Inc.’s web performance technology. What’s more, traffic increased 28% for these e-retailers the week of Nov. 5-11 compared with the Oct. 29.-Nov. 4 period.
Last year, traffic also surged on Nov. 8, however it did not stay elevated for the holiday season until roughly Nov. 15, says Bob Buffone, Yottaa’s founder and chief technology officer.
“Holiday online shopping continues to trend earlier and earlier each year, with this year eclipsing last year by about a week,” Buffone says.