This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

One-third of Online Retailers Missed Christmas Shipping Deadlines

By Hal M. Bundrick

NEW YORK (MainStreet) Amazon is handing out refunds for delays while UPS and FedEx are still apologizing for holiday-season snafus. This year's Christmas delivery crunch may change the costs and consumer expectations for next year's holiday shopping experience. Internet Retailer says one-third (32%) of the 25 largest online retailers in North America neglected to get at least some portion of their Christmas orders delivered on time.

Industry insiders blame later cutoff dates, higher order volume and bad weather. UPS said volume exceeded its capacity but declined to say how many packages were affected. A U.S. Postal Service spokeswoman told Internet Retailer that shipping volume for this year's holiday season increased 19% over last year, which exceeded a 12% anticipated increase.

E-commerce analysts say next year major retailers may consider rolling-back service guarantees and hiking shipping prices close to holiday deadlines, in an effort to encourage shoppers to place orders earlier.

Must Read: The Payment 'Float' May Soon Disappear

Amazon announced that it had limited acceptance of new Prime memberships during this year's peak holiday shipping period in order to protect timely current-member order fulfillment. Amazon Prime allows members to receive free two-day shipping on certain products for a $79 annual fee.

Though higher volume was blamed for delays, comScore says online holiday spending actually fell short of predictions, rising just 10%.

"Our expectations for the online holiday shopping season anticipated that consumers would spend heavily later into the season out of necessity to make up for the highly compressed holiday shopping calendar this year," says comScore chairman Gian Fulgoni. "Unfortunately that was not in the cards, as the final online shopping week saw considerably softer sales than anticipated, including zero billion dollar spending days although Monday and Tuesday came close."

Fulgoni says heavy discounting may have had the most impact on sales.

"In the end, I think we'll look back at this online holiday season as one where absolute dollar sales gains in consumer spending were held back by heavy retailer price discounting that occurred in an attempt to stimulate consumer demand, while at the same time, consumers weren't willing or able to increase their spending rate to fully compensate for the six-day shorter shopping period between Thanksgiving and Christmas," Fulgoni added.

Written by Hal M. Bundrick for MainStreet

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free
AAPL $95.41 1.90%
FB $117.83 -0.62%
GOOG $696.00 -0.32%
TSLA $233.61 -3.40%
YHOO $36.13 -1.10%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,770.29 -120.87 -0.68%
S&P 500 2,064.80 -16.63 -0.80%
NASDAQ 4,775.4250 -42.1690 -0.88%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs