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The Goldman, Sachs & Co., Nielsen//NetRatings and Harris Interactive fifth annual Holiday eSpending Report has been released, and has revealed that U.S. online holiday sh...

Simon Carless, Blogger

December 30, 2005

2 Min Read

The Goldman, Sachs & Co., Nielsen//NetRatings and Harris Interactive fifth annual Holiday eSpending Report has been released, and has revealed that U.S. online holiday shopping totaled $30.1 billion, excluding travel, during the 2005 holiday season (October 29 - December 23), a 30 percent increase from the 2004 holiday season. However, toy and video game hardware/software spending combined accounted for just $2.296 billion of that total, down 9% from 2004, reflecting a disappointing transitional holiday season for the game business, as the Xbox 360 failed to find sufficient stocks to meet demand, and a seemingly similar lack of buoyancy for the toy industry. This meant that the toy/game total was even outpaced by books, which are increasingly purchased online, and were up 66% to $2.953 billion. The same was true for consumer electronics spending, up 109% to $4.793 billion - both of these categories were level with or below toy/game spending in 2004. Finally, computer hardware/peripherals, including PC sales, were up an impressive 126% in 2005 to $4.821 billion, with apparel/clothing up 42% to $5.349 billion. "Apparel remains one of the more dominant product categories during the holiday season, mirroring offline holiday retail behavior," said Heather Dougherty, senior retail analyst, Nielsen//NetRatings. "Computer hardware and consumer electronics had a stellar season with the price reductions for laptops, plasma TVs, color printers as well as high demand for iPods, digital cameras, and media accessories. The 2005 holiday season was a gadget year for consumers of all ages, and consumers continued to show their love for free shipping." Dougherty continued, "Toys and video games were not as fortunate this year, with a lack of the must-have toy to drive sales. Moreover, the line between product categories are blurring with the introduction of more hybrid devices that can be considered consumer electronics or computer hardware."

About the Author(s)

Simon Carless

Blogger

Simon Carless is the founder of the GameDiscoverCo agency and creator of the popular GameDiscoverCo game discoverability newsletter. He consults with a number of PC/console publishers and developers, and was previously most known for his role helping to shape the Independent Games Festival and Game Developers Conference for many years.

He is also an investor and advisor to UK indie game publisher No More Robots (Descenders, Hypnospace Outlaw), a previous publisher and editor-in-chief at both Gamasutra and Game Developer magazine, and sits on the board of the Video Game History Foundation.

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