Consumers took to their computers and smartphones more often this holiday season to stock their stuffings and check items off their gift-giving list. According to research from Mastercard, e-commerce sales hit a record high this holiday shopping season.
Mastercard, which tracked sales from Nov. 1 through Christmas Eve, said in its SpendingPulse surve that e-commerce sales accounted for 14.6 percent of total retail sales this holiday season. Online sales jumped 18.8 percent when compared to the 2018 holiday shopping season.
Overall, it was a strong holiday season for retailers, with Mastercard reporting that overall retail sales – including both online and brick-and-mortar – rose 3.4 percent this year when compared to last. That figure does not include auto sales.
Steve Sadove, senior advisor for MasterCard, said that several retailers offered what he called omnichannel sales, sales in both their physical stores and on their Websites, earlier in the shopping season. This led to increased shopping earlier in November and helped boost retailers’ overall sales numbers during the season.
According to the survey, apparel posted a 1 percent gain on a year-over-year basis. This sector performed especially well online, with e-commerce apparel sales up 17 percent when compared to 2018.
Jewelry sales were up 1.8 percent this season, with online sales jumping 8.8 percent. Department stores, though, saw their overall sales dip 1.8 percent, though their online sales increased 6.9 percent from 2018.
Electronics and appliance sales were up 4.6 percent overall, while home furniture and furnishings sales rose 1.3 percent.