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Performance Tracking  > 2012 Holiday Season  > Introduction

WebSitePulse 2012 Holiday Retail Performance and Uptime Report

The Holidays season is upon us and so are the holiday shopping sprees. This period is vital for the retailers as holiday sales amount to about a quarter of the overall retail sales for the whole year. If you need further proof of how important holiday sales are for the economy, just picture this - they are expected to increase with yet another 4.1% to $586.1 billion. And that is for November and December alone.

Of course, if we take a closer look at the numbers, we will see that that is actually a quite conservative growth compared to last year (5.6%). NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay attributes this tempered forecast to variables which include the presidential election, the confusion surrounding the ‘fiscal cliff’ and the concern relating to future economic growth. Still, the experts are optimistic that the Holiday season will be strong and conclude that with the right promotions retailers will still manage to show solid growth for this year.

With the extended use of smartphones and tablets on the rise, it is hardly surprising that shoppers will continue to move online for their purchases. In fact, online sales are expected to hit a new high and grow with over 12% compared to last year. Total online spending this holiday season is estimated at between $92 billion and $96 billion. As usual, we will be monitoring how the most prominent online shopping destinations are coping with the challenge of increased demand and high traffic. That is why between November 21, 2012 and January 6th, 2013 you will be able to see the daily statistics in our Holiday Retail Performance and Uptime Reports.

The Reports reflect a typical online purchase transaction, like selecting an item, adding it to the shopping cart and checkout, representative for the End Users' interactions with a website. Measurements of the multi-step transactions are made every 15 minutes, simultaneously from 3 different US cities. The information from the report will provide insight into the End Users' shopping experience, the reliability of the IT infrastructure of the selected Internet retailers, and their estimated losses in case of downtime and failure of critical websites, web pages, web systems, network devices, and web applications.