E-Commerce Retail Sales as a Percent of Total Sales, United States

E Commerce Retail Sales as a Percent of Total Sales United States

Source: Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.

E-commerce retail sales in the United States are illustrative of the diffusion of e-commerce, either as a complement or a substitution to conventional retail sales. From a negligible share of less than 1% in early 2000, it steadily grew until around 2015, when the trend accelerated. E-commerce became mainstream with well-known online retail platforms, with 10% of total retail sales at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The lockdowns in the first half of 2020 had a substantial impact on e-commerce activity, which surged in 2020 to 16% of total retail sales, and then declined to 15% once the lockdowns ended. Since then, the share declined slightly, reflecting a readjustment of retail activity with more normalized commuting.