According to the Abacus Indicator from Bloomfield, CO-based cooperative database provider Abacus Direct, consumer catalog and online sales increased a healthy 10% in 2004. But there wasn’t a corresponding increase in the number of consumers who purchased via catalog or the Web: The number of households purchasing remained steady at 55 million. Instead, an 11% increase in purchase frequency per household was responsible for the sales increase.
“These data support what many believe to be a definite rising tide in the industry,” says Casey Carey, Abacus’s vice president of marketing. “Although some mailers reported disappointing results early in 2005, the general trend across the board seems to continue upward. Though most every merchant will benefit, those who are best leveraging data and insight to improve marketing performance will most likely have an advantage to increase share in their category.”