Surveys say…Web sales thrived after Thanksgiving

The day after Thanksgiving was a boon to online catalogers this year–but how big a boon is open to interpretation. According to a Nielsen/NetRatings Holiday eCommerce report, 22% more home Internet users shopped online the day after Thanksgiving this year than had shopped any of the three days prior to the holiday. But last year, online shopping had increased 27% the day after Thanksgiving.

Among the online stores that saw the greatest increase in traffic from Friday, Nov. 16, to the Friday after Thanksgiving were Kmart (a 227% increase), Target (a 152% boost), and Wal-mart (a 132% increase). While Amazon.com had the most visitors overall (1.7 million) the day after Thanksgiving, it saw a traffic increase of only 33%.

But according to BizRate.com, its 2,000 affiliated online merchants rang up $395 million in sales Friday, Nov. 23, through Sunday, Nov. 25, up 26% from the three-day weekend immediately following Thanksgiving 2000. The average purchase size increased from $115 to $131. In contrast, mall traffic was down 7.5% through Saturday according to RCT System’s National Retail Traffic Index.

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