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Jupiter Report: Netflix Leads Online Gainers

27 Dec, 2001 By: Holly J. Wagner

Netflix.com was the top-gaining shopping Web site for the week ended Dec. 16 based on percentage of growth in average daily visitors over the previous week, according to Internet analysis and measurement firm Jupiter Media Metrix.

In a sea of e-tailers hawking products from food to lingerie to giftware, Netflix.com fared well in both number and percentage of new visitors with 117 percent traffic increase to 586,000 average daily visitors. Close behind were greeting card sites Hallmark.com, which increased 71 percent to 415,000 average daily visitors; and Egreetings.com, which increased 63 percent to 287,000 average daily visitors.

The week's top-gaining shopping sites, ranked according to their total increase in number of average daily visitors versus the previous week, were: Mypoints.com, which increased by 519,000 average daily visitors to 2.5 million; Netflix.com, which increased by 316,000 average daily visitors to 586,000; and Half.com, which increased by 266,000 average daily visitors to 886,000.

Traffic to movie retail sites as a category was up 10 percent for the week – less than some other categories but still a strong showing.

Although overall online sales dipped slightly in the week ended Dec. 16, online sales for the week increased by 55 percent over last year, climbing from 33.8 million to 52.3 million unique visitors, according to Jupiter's latest Online Shopping Index.

The index was down one-tenth of a percent from the week ended Dec. 9, but the year-over-year growth of 55 percent compares strongly with the 25 percent annual growth rate of the same week last year, anaysts say.

"The growth trajectory increased each week during the first four weeks of this year's holiday shopping period, which is in marked contrast to last year when year-over-year growth rates declined each week," said Charles Buchwalter, Jupiter's v.p. of media research. "That translates into a holiday season where the majority of online shopping activity occurs closer to Christmas versus earlier in the shopping season."

Notable gains for shopping categories, ranked according to their percent-change in number of average daily visitors versus the previous week, included furniture sites, which increased 59 percent to 252,000 average daily visitors; food sites, which increased 18 percent to 564,000 average daily visitors; flowers, gifts and greeting sites, which increased 16 percent to 2 million average daily visitors; and movie retail sites, which increased 10 percent to 1.5 million average daily visitors.

Top gaining categories, ranked according to their change in total number of visitors versus the previous week, include: flowers, gifts and greeting sites, which increased by 272,000 average daily visitors to 2.0 million; movie retail sites, which increased by 136,000 average daily visitors to 1.5 million; and food, which increased by 86,000 average daily visitors to 564,000.

"Steady traffic to many brick-and-mortar sites indicates that consumers are researching online with the intent of buying in the actual stores, highlighting the need for retailers to integrate their online and offline operations," said Jupiter analyst Jared Blank.

The Online Shopping Index aggregates Web visitors from home and work to nearly 500 shopping sites and 19 subcategories

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