Holiday web sales seen up on Monday

Mon Dec 1, 2008 11:22am EST
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By Brad Dorfman

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Retail sales online are expected to surge on Monday as shoppers look for more discounts than they found during the holiday weekend, but overall holiday web sales will remain weak due to the economy, analysts said.

According to a survey, conducted this weekend by BIGresearch, 84.6 million consumers plan to shop online from home or at work on Monday, up from 72 million in 2007.

So far, top-selling items online include the Apple iPod and iPhone and the Nintendo Wii game console, according to data from eBay and

"It was a very soft November, but it should be a much better December," Forrester analyst Sucharita Mulpuru said, noting there is typically a spike in online sales on what some call Cyber Monday, the Monday after Thanksgiving.

Mulpuru said online sales could be up in the low double digits on Monday, when shoppers are expected to make additional purchases at work using faster Internet connections.

Online sales rose 1 percent on so-called Black Friday to $534 million, tracking firm comScore said on Sunday.

Combined with web sales on U.S. Thanksgiving the previous day, the figure rose 2 percent. Sales were down 4 percent in the first 28 days of November from a year ago, comScore said.

The firm also stood by its forecast for total web holiday sales to be flat this year at $29.2 billion, compared with a 19 percent rise in 2007.   Continued...