Jupiter: E-Commerce Sales Will Reach $65B in 2004

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Online retail sales this year will be $65 billion and will grow at an annual compound rate of 17 percent to reach $117 billion for 2008, according to Jupiter Research.


The New York market researcher expects e-commerce to account for 5 percent of all U.S. retail sales across channels. But the influence is wider, a new Jupiter report called "Market Forecast: U.S. Retail 2004-2008" said.


For example, by 2008, research done online will influence nearly 30 percent of offline retail purchases.


E-commerce will grow because of new online buyers and increased average spending per buyer, the report said.


As online use matures and the Internet population reaches saturation, the growth in new consumers choosing to spend online will slow. Those consumers will reach a penetration of 67 percent of all online users by 2008.


The good news is that, through 2008, average spending per buyer growth shows steady increases until it reaches $708 per buyer in the final year of projections.


Retailers of early success areas like personal computers, books and software can expect sales to plateau in that category.


Also, areas of steep growth -- more than 30 percent of compounded growth -- are the home and personal care categories including home improvement, grocery and over-the-counter drugs. Finally, the steady sellers online will include consumer electronics and apparel.


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