November 19, 2020

US Retail Ecommerce and Total Retail Sales, Q3 2019-Q3 2020

Methodology

Data is from the November 2020 US Department of Commerce report titled "Quarterly Retail E-commerce Sales, 3rd Quarter 2020." Quarterly retail ecommerce estimates are derived from the same sample used for the Monthly Retail Trade Survey and administrative records. All estimates are revised based on the 2018 Annual Retail Trade Survey. A stratified simple random sampling method is used to select approximately 10,800 retail firms excluding food services, whose sales are then weighted and benchmarked to represent more than 2 million retail firms. Online financial brokers and dealers, ticket sales agencies and travel services are not classified as retail and are excluded from the total or ecommerce sales estimates. Ecommerce is defined as sales of goods and services where an order is placed by the buyer or where the price and terms of sale are negotiated over an Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) network, email, extranet, internet, mobile device or other digital system. Payment may or may not be made digitally. Due to recent events surrounding COVID-19, many businesses are operating on a limited capacity or have ceased operations completely. The Census Bureau has monitored response and data quality and determined estimates in this meet publication standards.limited capacity or have ceased operations completely. The Census Bureau has monitored response and data quality and determined estimates in this meet publication standards