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Cyber Monday rose 16.4 percent, comScore says

NEW YORK (AP) -- Shoppers bought online at the heaviest rate ever on the Monday after Thanksgiving, known as Cyber Monday, according to research firm comScore Inc.

The group says e-commerce spending rose 17 percent from last year's Cyber Monday to $1.47 billion, making Monday the top online spending day since comScore began tracking the data in 2001.

ComScore tracks U.S. online sales, excluding mobile sales, based on observed behavior of a representative U.S. consumer panel of 1 million Web users.

Andrew Lipsman, vice president of industry analysis for comScore, said heavy online promotions on Thanksgiving and the day after Thanksgiving, known as Black Friday, might have pulled some sales forward. But “the bottom line is it's a huge number. There are lots of superlatives for the day,” he said.

Electronics and accessories were the biggest purchase of the day. The biggest growth of product categories purchased online include digital content and subscriptions, consumer electronics, computer hardware, and video games, consoles and accessories, with jewelry and watches coming in after that.

Meanwhile, IBM Benchmark reported on Tuesday that sales rose 30.3 percent. IBM Benchmark takes sales results from over 500 online retailers and analyzes the data to estimate total online spending.

Online sales are still only about 10 percent of total holiday spending, but that's growing every year. The National Retail Federation estimates that overall retail sales in November and December will be up 4.1 percent this year to $586.1 billion.

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