Surveys Focus on Web Sales

If you’ve been experiencing sluggish Website performance, you’re not alone. San Mateo, CA-based Web performance measurement and management services provider Keynote Systems on Dec. 17 reported that major online shopping sites continue to display inconsistent response times and success rates this holiday season. According to Keynote’s analysis, online performance is worse at the beginning of the workday, improving throughout the day.

Keynote’s overall index “success rate” for the week of Dec. 8 improved from the previous week’s six-week low, coming in at 96% availability–in other words, 96% of transactions could be completed. But nearly 14% of transactions on the worst-performing site failed.

In other e-commerce news, online shoppers spent $8.5 billion in November holiday shopping, up 55% from November 2002, according to a study by New York-based investment firm Goldman Sachs & Co., conducted by Harris Interactive and Nielsen//NetRatings. Apparel accounted for $1.6 billion in purchases, up 33% from the previous November. Sales of toys and video games reached $875 million, up 32%; book sales hit $761 million, up 61%; videos and DVDs accounted for $758 million in sales, up 133%; and music sales were $402 million, up 57%.

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