A whopping $110.6 billion was spent online from Nov. 1 to Dec. 19, according to fresh data from Adobe Analytics released Thursday. That's nearly an 18% year-over-year jump in online sales.
And, as the Saturday before Christmas approaches, much more digital shopping -- over $15 billion more -- is forecast.
What's more, a fifth of shoppers still plan to buy most of their gifts at major online retailers such as Amazon.com (AMZN) and eBay.com (EBAY) , found Adobe's survey of more than 1,000 consumers in the U.S.
The much talked about jump in online holiday sales this year makes sense, said Joanne Joliet, a retail analyst with Gartner. Big picture economic trends, such as the booming economy, low jobless rate and time span between the Thanksgiving holiday and Christmas, are all factors. But, so too are the public's comfort with using technology -- some 90% of shoppers go into stores armed with their smart phones -- and retailer's eagerness to sell products in any forum possible.
While Amazon has been considered a leader in online sales for years, spurring hikes in digital commerce with their one-click sales and two-day free shipping, other major retailers have also come up with strategies in recent years to effectively combine online and in-store shopping, drawing from their vast stocks at shops around the nation.
While Amazon attracts buyers with two-day delivery by those speeding white vans, other big brick-and-mortar merchants are holding their own with click and collect offers. Amazon declined to release overall sales numbers for the holiday season.
"Companies like Target and Walmart ... are in a position to say, 'I can get it to you much faster than two days," she said, by using inventory in-store at Target Corp. (TGT) or Walmart Inc. (WMT) for pickup after an online sale.
Merchants such as Home Depot Inc. (HD) , said Joliet, may fulfill as much as half of their online orders with in-store pickups.
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