Online sales from Nov. 1 through Dec. 1 fell 2 percent year over year to $12 billion, according to the latest tally from Internet market research firm ComScore.
Spending improved over the Thanksgiving weekend, with online sales up 13 percent from Black Friday through Dec. 1, or "Cyber Monday," to $2.1 billion year over year.
Sales on Cyber Monday — the marketing device created by the National Retail Federation trade association to promote an online equivalent of Black Friday — increased 15 percent to $846 million. ComScore said it was the second-heaviest online spending day on record, with 57 million shoppers entering cyberspace. The most visited e-commerce site was eBay with nearly 13 million visitors, followed by Amazon.com and related sites, Walmart.com, Target.com, Apple.com, Bestbuy.com and its family of sites, and Dell.com.
"Consumers are clearly responding positively to retailers' aggressive online discounts," said ComScore chairman Gian Fulgoni. "This is an extremely encouraging development for retailers, and we can but hope that their aggressive discounting has still left room for profits."
ComScore is projecting flat online sales for the combined November through December holiday period of $29.2 billion.