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11/27/2006
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Online Retail Visits Jump Sharply Before Black Friday, Hitwise Says

Thanksgiving Day visits to online retail sites were up 11.8% this year compared with last year and 33.9% compared with 2004, according to online intelligence service Hitwise.

Thanksgiving Day visits to online retail sites were up 11.8% this year compared with last year and 33.9% compared with 2004, according to Hitwise.

The online intelligence service reported Monday that big-box stores like Wal-Mart and Best Buy dominated Thanksgiving Day online visits, while traffic on its U.S. Retail 100 Index on Black Friday rose only 2.7% from last year.

That indicates consumers were researching sales before Black Friday, says Bill Tancer, general manager of global research for Hitwise.

Wal-Mart drew 18.26% of the market share of visits on the Hitwise index of 100 Web sites, while Best Buy accounted for 8.75%. Amazon.com, Circuit City, and Target rounded out the top five for market share on the index, with 8.36%, 6.98%, and 6.06%, respectively.

The Hitwise list of leading retail Web sites excludes auctions, classifieds, computer manufacturers, relationship sales, reward point collections, music downloads, and DVD and video game rentals.

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