Alpha Resource Partners says that while overall retail sales growth in the world’s largest economy limps along in single digits, expansion in the online segment of the market continues to gather pace reaching 14% in 2013.
Although much of the business done online occurs on PCs, the share of the market attributable to mobile devices is gaining traction at an alarming rate as more and more consumers rely on tablets and smartphones for everyday computing needs.
“Herculean efforts by the usual suspects, the big-hitters like Amazon, eBay, Walmart and Staples continue to go from strength to strength” said an Alpha Resource Partners analyst. “They’re finding new and more innovative ways in which to ramp up revenue from online retailing by offering discounts and inducements and those are eclipsing efforts being made by traditional, bricks & mortar retailers who are still reeling from the effects of inclement weather that prevailed over much of the first quarter of 2014,” he continued.
Online retail sales in the United States will hit an extraordinary $370 billion by 2017 according to respected market research company, Forrester. Alpha Resource Partners says that while it expects the growth in online retail to continue, it points out that regardless of the huge numbers involved, online sales still only account for 8% of all retailing in the country.
“We see the increasing amount of time that consumers spend online as being crucial to the growth story but, equally important is the fact that traditional retailers who have seen the way the wind is blowing are spending more and more money on their own online retail portals in order to capture consumers they may have missed at the bricks & mortar stores,” the Alpha Resource Partners analyst concluded.
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