Online retail sales to rise 22 percent this year

Online retail sales are expected to rise 22 percent to $172.4 billion (£94.1 billion) this year, driven by growth in travel, cosmetics and jewellery, according to a study by and conducted by Forrester Research.

Online shopping by women will lead the surge, the report predicted.

Online sales of cosmetics and fragrances are expected to grow 33 percent, while sales of jewellery and luxury goods are projected to rise 31 percent. Internet sales of flowers, cards, and gifts are also expected to rise 30 percent, the study found.

"Women are flocking to the Internet in droves to comparison shop, research, and buy," Scott Silverman, Executive Director of, said in a statement.

"Online retailers who sell products that are purchased by women are in a favourable position this year, as we expect those categories to grow substantially."

Online travel sales are expected to grow 20 percent, accounting for $62.8 billion, marking the largest category of online revenue.

According to the study, retailers said the Web influenced 20 percent of in-store sales.

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