|Wed Jan 2 2013 11:39:32|
Amazon Sellers Grow Unit Sales 40 Percent over Holidays
By: Ina Steiner
Amazon sellers in the U.S. saw 40% unit growth during the holiday shopping season. However, in releasing that number, Amazon.com did not break out "same store sales," so it's difficult to know precisely how much growth came from its ability to attract new sellers offering unique inventory to the marketplace.
Nevertheless, it's an impressive number. To try to put it in perspective, online retailers saw 16% growth (that's dollar growth, not unit) during the holiday shopping season ($38.7 billion), according to Comscore.
Amazon has more than 2 million third-party sellers worldwide on Amazon, but it doesn't break out that number geographically.
In October, Amazon revealed that third-party seller units were 41% of total paid units in the third quarter, up 1% from Q2 and the highest it had ever been. (Two years ago, that number was 32%.)
That means today's figure that shows Amazon saw extremely strong unit growth accounts for a big percentage of its total paid units. (Even though we're still comparing apples and oranges - U.S. unit growth versus the percentage of 3P unit sales Worldwide.)
Amazon keeps numbers close to the vest, but it did reveal n April that unit growth for all third-party sellers in the first quarter of 2012 was 60%, which its CFO said at the time was "very strong across international and North America." Another figure to put the 40% U.S. seller growth rate into perspective!
Amazon said 2012 was a record-breaking holiday season for businesses selling on Amazon. For the year, sellers on Amazon sold "hundreds of millions of units worth tens of billions of dollars worldwide."
Peter Faricy, VP for Amazon Marketplace, said, "We value the breadth and depth of selection that businesses selling on Amazon offer our more than 188 million active customers worldwide. The entire Amazon Seller organization is focused on helping third-party businesses succeed and grow on Amazon. We do this by creating a dynamic marketplace platform that helps every seller deliver the best possible selection, service and prices to all Amazon customers."
Other tidbits gleaned from the Amazon press release:
- "Sellers around the world continued the rapid adoption of Amazon's innovative fulfillment service - Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA)."
- Amazon has more than 188 million active customers worldwide.
- Thousands of businesses use the Amazon Webstore platform to run their shopping sites.
- Visitors clicked on "tens of millions" of Product Ads.
We'll know eBay's fourth quarter numbers in 2 weeks, and Amazon will likely release its Q4 numbers the week after that.
In the meantime, let us know what kind of unit and dollar growth rates you saw during the holiday shopping season in the channels on which you sell, including your own stores!