ComScore: Online sales ring up $2.1 bln in 2003

ComScore Networks said that online retail sales, excluding travel and auction purchases, reached $2.1 billion last week, a 28% increase over the same period last year. ComScore expects the week ending Dec. 14 to be the most profitable seven-day period ever recorded by e-tailers.

The research firm said online retail sales for the first week of December were just more than $2 billion, a 26% gain over the same week in 2002, pushing returns for the first half of December past $4 billion. For both weeks it was the first time the $2 billion mark was crested during a seven-day period since ComScore began tracking online sales in 2001.

Overall, ComScore has charted $9.4 billion in e-tail sales since the beginning of the holiday season on Nov. 1, a 29% increase over 2002 returns for the same timeframe. Sales since Thanksgiving have reached $4.8 billion, an increase of 26% over last year. The company is projecting total holiday online retail sales of roughly $12.3 billion, or a 27% gain over 2002 returns.

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