Reston, Va. - The CE and PC categories led an 11 percent surge in online sales during the fourth quarter for a total e-commerce take of $43.4 billion.
According to online research firm ComScore, the growth rate represented the fifth consecutive quarter of positive year-over-year increases for e-tail and the second quarter of double-digit gains in 2010.
"Retail e-commerce had a strong fourth quarter ... as holiday season spending was bolstered by an improving sentiment among some consumer segments and by retailers' discounting and promotions," said ComScore chairman Gian Fulgoni.
"The 2010 holiday season saw the first billion-dollar day on record and several more surpassing $900 million to help propel Q4 to record spending levels. We anticipate that the progress we've seen in the past year as we climbed out of the recession will continue with sustained double-digit growth rates in 2011."
Top-performing categories included computer software (excluding PC games), CE, and computers/peripherals/PDAs, each of which grew at least 15 percent year over year.
ComScore said the top 25 e-tailers accounted for 68.4 percent of all dollars spent online during the fourth quarter, up 5.6 percentage points from the prior year, and that 84 percent of U.S. Internet users conducted an online transaction during the holiday period, up from 78 percent in 2009. The average buyer spent about the same amount online during the quarter as they did during the prior-year period.
ComScore will present a full analysis of fourth-quarter e-tail performance in a live webinar this Thursday, Feb. 17, at 2:00 p.m. ET. Visit