Final tally: Consumers spent $29B online over the holidays

Online spending increased 21% from last year

US consumers spent US$29.2 billion online from November 1 to December 31, the traditional holiday season, up 19% from the same time last year and breaking last year's record of US$24.6 billion, according to online measurement company comScore.

However, because of slow online sales during the first 10 days of November, spending did not reach the 20% growth forecast by comScore, said Chairman Gian Fulgoni in a statement. But online spending increased 21% from last year in the period between Thanksgiving and Christmas, he noted.

Consumers spent the most money online -- US$881 million -- on December 10, a Monday, followed by US$819 million on December 11 and US$803 million on December 6, according to comScore.

On Cyber Monday, November 26, the first Monday after Thanksgiving, consumers spent US$733 million online, the research firm said.

The fastest-growing online retail category was video games, consoles and accessories, which was up 129% from the 2006 holiday season, comScore said. Consoles, such as the Nintendo Wii and the Sony PlayStation, as well as games like Halo 3, were big sellers in the category and contributed to the increase in sales, the statement said. Online sales of consumer electronics were up 23% from 2006, while online sales of furniture, appliances and equipment were up 67% and sales of event tickets were up 24%, comScore said.

Consumers spent the most online -- US$4.7 billion -- during the week ending December 16, slightly more than the US$4.6 billion they spent during the week ending December 9, comScore said.

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