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Online retailing "state of the nation"

Belatedly, we discovered the Forrester Research/Shop.org "State of Online Retailing 7.0", published in May 2004. About.com summarises the key messages pretty well. Here are the key stats...

  • Operating margins at 21%
  • Catalogue companies operating at 28%
  • Sales growth rates sales expected to increase more than 40 percent in the health and beauty (61%), apparel (42%), and flowers, cards, and gifts (41%) categories
  • Marketing costs per order at $4
  • Customer service costs per order at $2.30
  • Fulfillment costs jumped to $9.80 per order
  • 24% of offline sales last year were influenced by the Web
  • One in four consumers will make a purchase in the store when returning an item they purchased online.

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