LONDON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The 2018 back-to-school shopping expenditure exceeded USD 80 billion with most of this revenue going towards online retailers. Online retailing has become the go-to shopping destination for back-to-school shoppers in the US due to the exponential growth of digital users. Technavio’s research data shows that there were over 201 million digital buyers in the US in 2015, a marked increase from 178 million in 2011.
The global smartphone market has seen tremendous growth over the years and this has created a significant opportunity for e-retail in the US as smartphones are the most-used device for shopping online among consumers. In the US, the total time spent by a consumer on smartphones for shopping was almost 61% in 2016, an increase from 50% in 2014. This growth is expected to catapult forward in the next five years.
Online retail market in the US to grow 8x more than brick-and-mortar retail
Researchers at Technavio forecast the online retail market in the US to grow at a CAGR of almost 16% until 2021. The forecast data shows that online retail is likely to grow at a much higher CAGR than brick-and-mortar retail in the US market. While the brick-and-mortar retail market in the country will grow at a CAGR of 2% until 2021, the online retail market is projected to grow at a CAGR eight times more than that of brick-and-mortar retail.
The consumer electronics and electricals segment accounted for the largest market share in 2016. This segment is experiencing high growth, as many consumers prefer to buy mobiles, tablets, LED/LCD TVs, laptops, and other electronics online. Amazon and Walmart are two of the biggest e-retailers in the consumer and electronics segment.
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Seasonal and holiday sales drive the online retail market in the US
Online sales during festive seasons and holidays have increased in recent years and are contributing to the growth of the market. For instance, this year’s back-to-school shopping spend is expected to exceed last year’s spend by a clear margin. This spike is mainly attributed to the increase in dual-income families.
Online holiday retail sales in the US crossed USD 95 billion in 2016, an increase of over 12% compared to 2015. Offers such as free shipping and steep discounts have motivated the US consumers to make purchases online. Apparel, footwear and accessories, consumer electronics, computer hardware, and toys are the largest gaining product categories during the back-to-school holiday season.
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