Insider Intelligence predicts that overall ecommerce sales in the U.S. will grow 9.3% this year.
Food and drink is currently the fastest-growing ecommerce sales category in the U.S., according to new data from market researcher Insider Intelligence. First off, the company predicts that overall ecommerce sales in the U.S. will grow 9.3% this year to $1.137 trillion. In terms of all retail, by the end of 2023, ecommerce will comprise 15.6% of total U.S. retail sales, up from 14.7% last year. By 2027, Insider Intelligence predicts that ecommerce sales will comprise more than 20% of total U.S. retail sales.
Food and Drink Ecommerce Leads Today, but Growth Is Slowing
Although ecommerce sales growth is slowing in food and drinks, this category is still the fastest-growing category in U.S. ecommerce today, according to Insider Intelligence. It predicts that food and drink ecommerce sales will grow 20% this year to $99.70 billion and to comprise 8.8% of overall U.S. ecommerce sales by the end of the year. By 2026, Insider Intelligence predicts that, for the first time, food and beverage sales will make up 10% of total U.S. ecommerce sales.
“Inflation has helped drive growth within the food and beverage category for the past year and a half,” added Whitney Birdsall, a forecasting analyst at Insider Intelligence, in the company’s press release. “This year, although retail sales growth is still considerably strong, easing inflation and the end of emergency SNAP allotments will contribute to the deceleration of ecommerce growth.”
Health, Beauty, and Personal Care Ecommerce to Become Fastest-Growing
The second fastest-growing ecommerce category in the U.S. today is health, beauty, and personal care. This includes over-the-counter products like medicine, vitamins and supplements, personal care and hygiene products, toiletries, and baby and pet products. This year, Insider Intelligence expects the category’s ecommerce sales to rise 18.9% and reach $130.5 billion.
Health, beauty, and personal care will eventually take over as the fastest-growing sector in ecommerce, however. “By next year,” Insider Intelligence predicts, “it will be the fastest-growing sector, jumping another 17.5% (food and beverage will grow 17.0%). With double-digit growth expected through the end of the forecast period, health and personal care online sales will exceed $200 billion in 2026. Most of this success is driven by the convenience of online shopping, with growth accelerating over the past two years.”
Within the health and personal care category, sales of cosmetic and beauty products specifically will grow 13.6% this year, reaching $18.40 billion by end of year. “However,” the report notes, “cosmetics’ share of health and beauty ecommerce will decline, as more of the sub-category’s growth comes from in-store sales.”