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U.S. online sales to exceed 1.1 trillion dollars in 2023 with slowest growth in a decade

By Don-Alvin Adegeest


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Online shopping at schuhe.de Credits: ANWR Media GmbH

E-commerce sales in the United States are expected to exceed 1.1 trillion dollars in 2023, showing significant growth from the 1 trillion dollars recorded in 2022, according to the Department of Commerce. Despite a 7 percent growth rate this year, it represents the slowest expansion since the 2009 recession. Marketplace Pulse's analysis reveals that the current e-commerce landscape is 14 percent above the theoretical trendline based on pre-pandemic forecasts. Adjusted for inflation, this year's 7 percent growth rate is even smaller.

The pandemic-induced surge in e-commerce, which initially created a substantial shift, is gradually diminishing, raising the possibility of the market aligning with the trendline in the coming years. While industry giants like Amazon, Walmart, Shein, and Temu have outperformed the 7 percent growth rate, smaller players in the market may have experienced negative growth, as noted by Marketplace Pulse.

Although e-commerce has remained relatively flat as a percentage of total retail for the past three years, it continues to expand in absolute terms. Over the past decade, a growth rate of 14-15 percent was standard, with acceleration and subsequent deceleration during the pandemic, said Marketplace Pulse. The 7 percent growth rate observed this year is considered a potential bottom, with expectations of future acceleration to 9-10 percent growth in the coming years. This underscores the enduring upward trajectory of e-commerce. While its share of retail may stabilise, the absolute dollar value flowing through the e-commerce sector continues to rise annually.