This Memorial Day may find consumers parked in front of their computers instead of malls. CNN reports that “high gas prices and tight budgets are forcing travelers to rethink their trips.” Stay-cations and online shopping have been in the media a lot lately. Time reported that, according to experts, “the amount of consumer spending online has risen sharply in recent months, hand in hand with soaring gas prices.” The winter holiday season, for example, saw a 15% increase in e-commerce, compared to a 4% in traditional shopping. That’s one for the books. And, speaking of books, Amazon had a 34 percent increase in revenue in the first quarter of 2012. E-commerce is growing, for sure.
But high gas prices are not the only reason for the increase in online shopping:
- Free shipping in many instances.
- Social media. Forbes named social networking sites one of 10 Online Shopping Trends to Watch, stating that “Facebook and Twitter aren’t even close to played out yet.”
- More access through mobile devices.
- No sales tax, in many cases, on items purchased online.
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