US E-commerce Sales Reach Historic High

Online sales in the U.S. grew 15.1 percent in the first quarter of 2016, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. E-commerce comprised 11.1 percent of retail sales (excluding automobiles and fuel, which are not normally purchased online) in the first quarter – a historic high, versus 10.2 percent a year earlier. Overall, online sales accounted for 7.7 percent of retail sales during the quarter (versus 6.9 percent in 2015) and made up 31.8 percent of total retail sales growth.

Internet Retailer notes that “This quarterly report comes on the heels of a strong 2015 for e-commerce. Shoppers in the U.S. spent $341.73 billion on retail purchases on the web last year, according to the Commerce Department, up 14.6% from 2014. That’s a rate nearly five times as fast as the 3.1% growth in store sales.” The article adds that 2015 “was the first year on record that e-commerce accounted for more than 10% of retail sales when factoring out the sales of automobiles, fuels and foodservice.”


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