With a shaky economy causing consumers angst this holiday season, online e-tailers say shoppers are opting for functional over frivolous. E-sales of furniture and appliances have spiked more than 70%, while sales of jewelry, watches, and flowers have dropped, reports the New York Times. “It’s certainly counter to our expectations,” said the CEO of Furniture.com.
ComScore, which tracks the online industry, says shoppers spent about 20% more online than last year, with affluent shoppers increasing spending 28%. Much of that spending went to home electronics, which saw a 129% bump. Analysts worry increased discounting and free shipping may cut into e-tailers’ bottom line.