DMA Says Direct Marketers Spur $24B in Online Sales in 2000

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U.S. consumers and businesses spent $24.2 billion on goods and services as a direct result of direct marketers' online expenditures in 2000, according to figures that the Direct Marketing Association is expected to release today.

The figure, which is a 75.3 percent increase from the $13.8 billion spent in 1999, shows that marketers have a "better understanding" of e-commerce dynamics, the DMA said.

The figures are part of the DMA's annual report, "2000 Economic Impact: U.S. Direct & Interactive Marketing Today."

"There's no doubt that marketers are getting a better understanding of e-commerce dynamics and how they can scale their Web applications to maximize profits," said H. Robert Wientzen, the DMA's president/CEO.

The report also found that in 2000, the financial services industry led consumer interactive spending with sales of $1.1 billion. Following were real estate with $638.1 million in sales, communications with $637.4 million in sales, transportation equipment with $579.8 million in sales, and industrial machinery and equipment with $476.8 million in sales.

"The results of this study show that even in the face of an economic downturn, businesses still depend on direct and interactive marketing techniques to improve their sales operations," Wientzen said.

The report also noted that the "torrid pace" of economic growth experienced in 2000 will not continue and that overall direct marketing sales are forecast to grow 9.6 percent annually through 2005. Total U.S. sales growth going forward is estimated at 5.4 percent annually.

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