comScore publish an flash report of the internet spending habits for 2009 and one of the areas that has provide to be essential element of the buying process for shoppers is free postage and packaging.
comScore comment - "comScore's analysis of online transactions reveals that free shipping remained an important driver of online shopping throughout the 2009 holiday season. During each week, at least 45 percent of all transactions included free shipping, outpacing the corresponding week in 2008.
The peak occurred during the week ending Dec. 6, with 50 percent of all transactions including free shipping.
The average order value for online transactions peaked at $117 during the week ending Nov. 29, 2009 and week ending Dec. 6, 2009, also outpacing the corresponding weeks in 2008. For the week ending Nov. 29, the average order value for transactions including free shipping was $124 while the average order for those without free shipping was $111.
For the week ending Dec. 6, the average order value for transactions including free shipping was $134 while the average order for those without free shipping was a much lower $103. This suggests that free shipping offers can be used creatively by retailers to incent consumers to spend more per order."