Online Retail Spending Grew 15% in 3Q

Digital measurement service comScore said that online retail spending in the U.S. reached $41.9 billion for the quarter, up 15% versus year ago. This represents the twelfth consecutive quarter of positive year-over-year growth and eighth consecutive quarter of double-digit growth.

While this is great overall news for ecommerce, digital downloads paced the year-over-year growth. The digital content and subscriptions, consumer electronics, event tickets, computer software and apparel and accessories categories each category grew at least 16% vs. year ago.

Also, according to comScore’s quarterly online retail survey, 37% of U.S. consumers say they have engaged in “showrooming” behavior where they use a smartphone while in a retail store to check prices or to even purchase a product online.

This represents an increase of five percentage points in the past two quarters.

The survey also shows that despite a slow-moving economic recovery there has been marked improvement in consumer sentiment in the past quarter, although many consumers still remain challenged by economic conditions.

Forty-eight percent of U.S. consumers now rate the economy as ‘poor’ an eight percentage point improvement vs. the prior quarter and the most pronounced improvement since early 2009.