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Ecommerce posts strongest annual growth since before recession

Reston, Va. - Retail ecommerce in 2012 ballooned 15% to $186.2 billion, and fourth quarter sales passed the $50 billion mark for the first time in history.
Fourth quarter retail ecommerce sales rose 14% to $56.8 billion, according to comScore, which measures the digital markets. Growth was driven by a 6% increase in traffic and an 8% increase in average spend.
The period represented the 13th consecutive quarter of positive year-over-year growth and the ninth consecutive quarter of double-digit growth.
"The only real blemish on an otherwise outstanding year for e-commerce was a holiday season that fell shy of initial expectations, apparently due to consumers' fiscal cliff concerns," said comScore chairman Gian Fulgoni. "To the extent that this pullback was just a temporary shock and not a sign of underlying economic weakness, we are optimistic that 2013 will build on the momentum of the past year."
Top-performing categories during 4Q were digital content & subscriptions, consumer electronics, toys & hobbies, apparel and accessories, and books & magazines.


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