Amazon 2016 Holiday Shopping Season Results

This Christmas break, Amazon set a new record by shipping more than 1 billion items worldwide. In the week leading up to December 25th, 3 million people signed up for Amazon Prime, more than any other holiday season. The best-selling products overall were Amazon’s Echo and Echo Dot, the voice-activated speakers which connect to Amazon’s intelligent Alexa Voice Service.

When it comes to Amazon first-party (1P) sellers, brand manufacturers like Melissa & Doug, Lego or Hasbro selling directly on Amazon.com, the most popular gift in the month of December was the PlayStation 4 Slim video game console. With 2.5 times more sales, PS4 is really taking the cake in the console race. This has been described as a close competition but if this holiday season is any indication, PlayStation is the clear winner.

Top 10 Most Popular 1P Gifts for December 2016 on Amazon.com

  1. PlayStation 4 Slim 500GB Console – Uncharted 4 Bundle
  2. Fitbit Charge 2 Heart Rate + Fitness Wristband, Black, Large
  3. Xbox One S 500GB Console – Battlefield 1 Bundle
  4. Instant Pot 1P-DUO60 7-in-1 Multi-Functional Pressure Cooker
  5. GoPro HERO5 Black
  6. Bose QuietComfort 35 Wireless Headphones
  7. iRobot Roomba Vacuum Cleaner
  8. Anki Overdrive Starter Kit
  9. Keurig Coffee Maker
  10. HTC VIVE – Virtual Reality System

Gadgetry was the real star of the 2016 gift-giving season, with the only exceptions in the top 10 being two kitchen items: an Instant Pot pressure cooker (Cyber Weekend’s darling) and a Keurig coffee maker. Video gaming takes 3 of the top spots while Fitbit, GoPro, a Roomba and a set of Bose headphones all secure a place. The only true “toy” on the list is a gadget as well: the Anki Overdrive Starter Kit, a toy car set with a customizable racetrack that, once built, can be raced on by robotic cars with one or more of them controlled by the player via an app on their mobile device.

Gadgets Holiday Winners

Let’s take a closer look at some of these numbers. The Holiday 2016 season is defined as October to December inclusive. During this period we saw a 16% YoY total sales increase, with December alone accounting for 45% of the total sales. Our data is based on Year-over-Year (YoY) sales compared to the 2015 holiday season, and reflects sales of items from first-party (1P) sellers only. High growth is defined as 40%+ growth YoY, medium as 20 to 39%, and low as less than 20%.

Top 20 Holiday 2016 Product Group in 1P Sales

Amazon.com’s top product group during the 2016 holiday season was, wait for it, Toys, which experienced medium growth to total $1.2B+ in sales. It’s nothing new for Toys to take the top product group spot during the holiday season, but robotics dominating the group is something new. Sitting in 2nd place behind Anki Overdrive is the same company’s Cozmo, the intelligent robot for kids. The only traditional, non-computerized toy in the top 5 is the party game Watch Ya’ Mouth in 3rd place, followed by Bloxels in 4th and the Osmo Genius Kit in 5th.

Top Selling Product Groups: YoY % Change

  1. Toys: +24%
  2. PCs: +13%
  3. Books: +6%
  4. Health & Personal Care: +31%
  5. Home: +18%
  6. Sports: +20%
  7. Kitchen: +12%
  8. Apparel: +32%
  9. Shoes: +5%
  10. Home Improvement: +32%
  11. Office Products: +26%
  12. Video Games: -10%
  13. Pet Products: +30%
  14. Beauty: +31%
  15. Electronics: +21%
  16. Tools: +18%
  17. Automotive: +20%
  18. Outdoors: +14%
  19. Lawn & Garden: +27%
  20. Furniture: +46%

As you can see, Furniture is the only product group in the top 20 that experienced high YoY growth. It is telling, however, that all but one of the groups has grown in YoY sales on Amazon, reflecting the eCommerce giant’s record-breaking year. Furniture was the third highest-growing group with holiday sales topping $350M, following Luxury Beauty with 80% YoY growth and Business, Industrial and Scientific Supplies with 54%.

In comparison, the only significantly declining product group was Home Entertainment, which saw a 41% decrease from the 2015 holiday season. Interestingly, despite accounting for single most popular 1P gift in Amazon’s 2016 holiday shopping season, Video Games saw an overall YoY decline of 10%, which pulled in approximately $450M in 2016 holiday sales. Other declining groups show much smaller rates, such as Luggage, with a decrease of only 3% still qualifying it as the third-lowest performing group.

All-in-all, the 2016 holiday shopping season was just more proof that Amazon is winning the race, with their busiest holiday shopping season so far leaving competitors in the dust. But now it’s time to look ahead. With continued expansions into Australia and elsewhere, the growth of their Prime Air fleet of drones and 767s, the introduction of Amazon Go stores in the US and the continued roll-out of private brands, 2017 is already shaping up to be the most exciting year in Amazon history.

With 98% accuracy, OCR delivers the industry’s most accurate sales data to their brand manufacturer clients selling on the world’s top eCommerce platforms. To get a glimpse of the unique insights One Click Retail provides its customers, be sure to follow our weekly blog at www.oneclickretail.com/insights, and follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.