Reports from two large research firms show a bullish forecast when it comes to online shopping during the holiday shopping season. But, overall retail sales may be down as fewer shoppers head to physical stores this year.
Forrester predicts online commerce will grow 18.5 percent in 2020 and reach 20.2 percent overall penetration in North America.
“As online buyer behavior remains strong, we expect offline sales to decline by 6.6 percent in 2020,” Forrester researchers said in the report.
Certain online verticals will boom, according to the firm, including health and beauty up 23 percent, consumer electronics up 20 percent, fashion up 19 percent and home furnishings with an increase of 16 percent.
Deloitte forecasts an even larger growth for e-commerce during the holiday shopping season. The firm predicts online retail sales will increase between 25 to 35 percent from November through January and will reach between $182 billion and $196 billion, despite an overall slower season for holiday retail sales.
“E-commerce is likely to be a big winner because consumers have shown a clear movement towards buying online rather than at brick-and-mortar stores,” said Daniel Bachman, Deloitte’s U.S. economic forecaster.