US E-Commerce Grew 44% in the Second Quarter

U.S. e-commerce grew 44.5% in the second quarter, the fastest growth in over two decades, lifting e-commerce share of total retail to 16.1%. According to the Department of Commerce, retailers generated $211 billion in online sales in the second quarter compared to $146 billion a year ago.

For the past ten years, e-commerce in the U.S. grew, on average, 15% year-over-year. Growth remained at that level during the first quarter of 2020 but has reached all-time highs in the second quarter at 44.5%.

U.S. E-Commerce Growth Rate'

U.S. e-commerce penetration reached 16.1% in the second quarter, up from 10.8% a year before. Excluding sales of cars, car parts, bars, and restaurants, e-commerce penetration was more than 22%.

One part of e-commerce penetration growth was increased sales online, another - decreased overall retail spending (the denominator in the penetration calculation). Retail spending shrank by 3.6% in the second quarter.

U.S. E-Commerce Sales as a Percent of Total Sales'

At 44.5% overall U.S. e-commerce growth, Amazon likely has lost some market share to its rivals. For the first time, its sales grew at or below the total e-commerce growth. The company doesn’t report the growth of its sales in the U.S.; nonetheless, its North America segment 43% in the second quarter. Although, that number doesn’t account for the impact of marketplace sales, which was its fastest-growing segment in the quarter.

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Juozas "Joe" Kaziuk─Śnas

Founder of Marketplace Pulse, Joe wears multiple hats in the management of Marketplace Pulse, including writing most of the articles. Based in New York City. Advisor to other startups and entrepreneurs. Occasional speaker at conferences.

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