[Techtaffy Newsdesk]

The U.S. online retail sector delivered 7.5 per cent growth in December 2011 compared to the same period last year, according to cloud-based analytics findings by IBM. IBM’s findings follow a strong November where both Black Friday 2011 and Cyber Monday 2011 delivered double-digit growth over 2010. On Christmas Day online shopping grew by 16.4 per cent over 2010.

John Squire (Chief Strategy Officer, IBM Smarter Commerce): This past December consumers remained committed to finding the best online deals whether through their PC or mobile device.

Quick look at the highlights of the report:

  • Consumer Spending Increases: Online sales were up 7.5 per cent over 2010.
  • Mobile Traffic: 14.6 per cent of all online sessions on a retailer’s site were initiated from a mobile device, more than double the rate of 5.6 per cent over this same period in 2010.
  • Mobile Sales: Sales from mobile devices doubled, reaching 11 per cent versus 5.5 per cent in December 2010.
  • Apple’s iPhone and iPad ranked one and two for mobile device retail traffic (5.2 per cent and 4.3 per cent respectively). Android was third at 4.1 per cent. Collectively iPhone and iPad accounted for 9.5 per cent over the course of the month.
  • Shoppers using the iPad continued to drive more retail purchases than any other device with conversion rates reaching 6.3 per cent compared to 3.1 per cent for all mobile devices.
  • Department stores continued to offer an array of compelling deals and promotions that caught the attention of consumers. As a result, department stores online sales were up 18 per cent over December 2010.
  • Home goods also reported a 15.6 per cent increase in sales over December with consumers continuing to shift their attention toward the home.
  • Apparel sales were strong last month realizing an increase of 16.3 per cent over 2010.
  • Health and Beauty consumers continued to show a desire to pamper themselves over the holiday with December sales increasing by 16 per cent year over year.