Highlights. In-store shopping still earns more sales dollars than online shopping. American consumers spent $6.917 trillion in retail stores and $1.154 trillion online in 2022.*

  • In the first six (6) months of 2023, consumers spent a monthly average of $663 billion on retail, 13.8% of it from e-commerce.
  • The monthly record for online purchases was 17.1% of retail sales dollars in April 2020.
  • The e-commerce share of total retail sales dollars has increased at an average annual rate of 7.59% since 1995.

*This value has not been seasonally adjusted; this report does not use seasonally adjusted values unless noted otherwise.

Grouped Bar Graph: Annual U.S. Retail Sales In-Store vs. Online, according to the U.S. Census Bureau

Online vs. In-store Sales Statistics

In-store shopping is still the preferred method for most American consumers.

  • Consumers spent $1.825 trillion on retail items in the third quarter of 2023, 15.6% of which came from e-commerce.
  • eCommerce represented a 4.93% larger share of monthly retail sales in the first half of 2023 than it did in the first half of 2022.
  • 83% of consumers shopped online and 83% shopped in-store in 2021.
  • In the fourth fiscal quarter (Q4)** of 2022, in-store sales dollars increased 0.96% from the previous quarter; e-commerce sales increased 20.2%. 
  • In 2021 Q4, in-store sales dollars increased 13.4%; e-commerce sales increased 38.5%. 
  • By October 2023, the e-commerce share of monthly retail sales dollars declined 12.1% from its peak in April 2020; the in-store share increased 2.54%
  • In 2022, total seasonally-adjusted in-store retail sales dollars increased 5.21%; seasonally-adjusted e-commerce sales dollars increased 10.7%.

**Q4 is the traditional winter holiday shopping season.

Grouped Bar Graph: Quarterly U.S. Retail Sales In-Store vs. Online, according to the U.S. Census Bureau

Online Shopping Statistics

Consumers are most likely to purchase personal electronics and apparel online and prefer to use ship-to-home for most online purchase fulfillments.

  • 33% of U.S. consumers bought shoes online over 12 months.
  • 2.4% of all fresh produce is sold online.
  • Furniture and home furnishing sales dollars account for 17.3% of all e-commerce sales.
  • Consumers are 42.5% more likely to select ship-to-home over in-store pickup, the second-most popular fulfillment method.
  • 32% of consumers who order groceries online expect same-day fulfillment.
  • 26% of online consumers report shipping delays on products ordered within the last 30 days.
  • Online consumers who experience shipping delays are 11.6% more likely to blame the fulfillment provider over the brand or retailer.
  • 42% of online returns over a 30-day period were returned via third-party drop-off.

Grouped Bar Graph: Annual U.S. Retail Sales Growth In-Store vs. Online, according to the U.S. Census Bureau

In-Store Shopping Statistics

Many consumers still prefer in-store shopping.

  • 45% of consumers primarily shop in brick-and-mortar stores.
  • 72% of consumers shop in stores on a weekly basis.
  • Experts project that 72% of retail sales will occur in brick-and-mortar stores in 2024.
  • Stores with greenery and outdoor themes charge up to 25% more for products than non-green environments.
  • From 2012 to 2022, total in-store retail sales dollars increased 53.8%.
  • 62% of consumers primarily buy groceries in-store.
  • 50% of consumers primarily buy personal care and beauty products in-store.
  • 40% of consumers primarily buy apparel and footwear in-store.
  • 28% of consumers primarily buy home goods in-store.

Pie Chart: Average American Shopping Habits, according to the National Retail Federation

Hybrid Shopping Statistics

Many consumers shop both online and in-store or purchase online and pickup in-store.

  • 27% of consumers regularly shop online and in-store.
  • 40% of consumers are primarily hybrid shoppers when purchasing home goods.
  • 25% of consumers are primarily hybrid shoppers for apparel and footwear.
  • 22% of consumers are primarily hybrid shoppers for personal care and beauty.
  • 20% of consumers are primarily hybrid shoppers for groceries.
Total Annual U.S. Retail Sales Dollars, in Trillions
Year In-store E-commerce
2022 $6.92 $1.15
2021 $6.40 $1.05
2020 $5.33 $0.89
2019 $5.52 $0.66
2018 $5.40 $0.58
2017 $5.21 $0.52
2016 $5.04 $0.47
2015 $4.93 $0.42
2014 $4.84 $0.38
2013 $4.66 $0.35
2012 $4.50 $0.33
2011 $4.30 $0.29
2010 $4.02 $0.26
2009 $3.83 $0.24
2008 $4.16 $0.23
2007 $4.22 $0.22
2006 $4.09 $0.20
2005 $3.91 $0.18
2004 $3.69 $0.15
2003 $3.48 $0.13
2002 $3.34 $0.12
2001 $3.26 $0.11
2000 $3.17 $0.11
1999 $2.99 $0.09
1998 $2.77 $0.08
1997 $2.66 $0.07
1996 $2.54 $0.06
1995 $2.40 $0.05

Online vs. In-store Shopper Statistics

Consumers are most likely to cite convenience as their primary reason for shopping in-store or online regardless of habits or preferences.

  • 31% of American consumers prefer to shop online.
  • 45% of consumers prefer to shop in-store.
  • 24% of consumers have no preference or decline to answer.
  • 70% of consumers who prefer to shop online instead of in-store report doing so for the sake of convenience.
  • 67% of consumers who prefer to shop online do so to save time.
  • 56% of consumers who prefer to shop in-store report their preference gives them a more enjoyable experience. 
  • 47% of consumers who prefer in-store shopping cite the ease of product comparisons, and  48% prefer in-store shopping for the sake of convenience.
  • 37% of consumers prefer to purchase personal electronics online as opposed to in-store.
  • 35% of consumers prefer to purchase apparel, shoes, and accessories online.
  • 29% of consumers prefer to purchase beauty and personal care products online.
  • 23% of consumers prefer to purchase furnishings and appliances.
  • 17% of U.S. consumers prefer to purchase groceries and household goods online.

Grouped Bar Graph: Primary Shopping Method by Generation, according to the National Retail Federation

Online vs. In-store Shopping by Generation

Older generations prefer to shop in-store while younger generations are more likely to shop online.

  • Consumers born between 1946 and 1964 (often called the “Baby Boomer” generation) are the generation most likely to shop primarily in stores.
  • 33.3% more Baby Boomers primarily shop in-store compared to all shoppers.
  • Consumers born from 1980 to 1994 (usually termed “Millennials”) are most likely to shop online.
  • Compared to all shoppers, 14.3% more Millennials shop primarily online.
  • Consumers born between 1995 and 2003 (often categorized as Generation Z) are the most likely to shop hybrid, an equal mix of in-store and online.
  • 33.3% more Gen Z consumers are hybrid shoppers compared to all consumers.

Generation Z Shopping Statistics

Shoppers born between 1995 and 2003 are second-most likely to shop online after Millennials.

  • 74% of Generation Z U.S. residents shopped in-store in 2021 while 73% shopped online.
  • 36% of Gen Z consumers regularly shop both online and in-store.
  • Given the option, 39% of Generation Z adults would prefer to shop in-store instead of online.
  • 38% of Gen Z adults prefer to shop online.
  • The remaining 23% decline to answer or have no preference.

Millennial Shopping Statistics

Consumers born between 1980 and 1994 are most likely to shop online.

  • 82% of Millennials shopped in-store in 2021 while 83% shopped online.
  • 30% of Millennial consumers regularly shop both online and in-store.
  • Given the option, 40% of Millennials would prefer to shop in-store instead of online.
  • 38% of Millennials prefer to shop in-store.
  • The remaining 22% decline to answer or have no preference.

Generation X Shopping Statistics

Consumers born between 1965 and 1979 shop online as often as Millennials, they prefer to shop in-store almost as often as Baby Boomers.

  • 88% of Gen Xers shopped in-store in 2021 while 85% shopped online.
  • 23% of Gen X consumers regularly shop both online and in-store.
  • Given the option, 44% of Generation X consumers would prefer to shop in-store instead of online.
  • 30% of Gen X consumers prefer to shop online.
  • The remaining 26% decline to answer or have no preference.

Baby Boomer Shopping Statistics

Consumers born between 1946 and 1964 are most likely to prefer a traditional shopping experience.

  • 89% of Baby Boomers shopped in-store in 2021 while 90% shopped online.
  • 18% of Boomers regularly shop both online and in-store.
  • Given the option, 53% of Baby Boomers would prefer to shop in-store instead of online.
  • 22% of Boomer consumers prefer to shop online.
  • The remaining 25% decline to answer or have no preference.

These data and insights were compiled by the Capital One Shopping team based on publicly available data.

Sources

  1. United States Census Bureau, Monthly Retail Trade Reports
  2. Morning Consult, Retail & E-commerce
  3. Statista, Retail & Trade
  4. Statista, E-Commerce
  5. National Retail Federation