Press Release brought to you by Stoler Report

Michael Stoler Report Newsletter The Stoler Report-New York's Business Report


E-Commerce retailing growing by leaps and bounds

According to the recently released "The Internet Retailer: 2013 Top 500 Guide: A Decade of E-Commerce Data, in 2012, the combined sales of the Top 500 grew year over year 17.5% to $216.17 billion from $183.93 billion, while total e-commerce as measured by the U.S. Department of Commerce increased about 15.8% to $225.5 billion last year from $194.7 billion in the prior year.

By contrast, total retail sales grew only about 4.1% to $3.09 trillion in 2012 from $2.97 trillion. The retail sales figures are from the U.S. Department of Commerce but exclude certain categories such as fuel, vehicles, restaurants and bars.

 While e-commerce represented only 7.3% of total U.S. retail sales in 2012, it accounted for 25.6% of the growth.

The top 100 retailers continue to account for the biggest portion of all Top 500 sales. In 2012, Amazon's total sales of $61.09 billion accounted for 28.3% of total Top 500 sales, 32.7% of Top 100 sales of $187.07 billion and 66.7% of all Top 500 web-only merchant sales. Minus its 2012 international sales of $26.28 billion, Amazon still single-handedly accounted for 15.4%-$34.81 billion-of  all U.S. e-commerce sales of $225.5 billion and 20.2% of all U.S. Top 500 sales of $172.27 billion.

Amazon's above-market growth is a major reason the biggest online retailers account for such a large share of all Top 500 sales. The combined 2012 web sales of the top 10 retailers, amounted to $111.34 billion and accounted for about 51.5% of all Top 500 sales and 59.5% of Top 100 sales. In comparison, the combined 2011 web sales of the 10 biggest retailers ranked in the Top 500 amounted to $93.9 billion and accounted for 51.1% and 58.9%, respectively of all Top 500 and Top 100 web sales.

The Biggest online retailers

            Company                     Sales

1               $61.09 billion

2          Staples                        $10.30 billion

3          Apple                           $8.83 billion

4                $7.70 billion

5          Liberty Interactive         $4.30 billion

6          Sears Holding               $4.20 billion

7          Office Depot                 $4.06 billion

8          Dell                              $3.90 billion

9          Net Flick                      $3.61 billion

10        Best Buy                      $3.35 billion

The percentage of shoppers finding an e-commerce site in 2012 via a search engine increased for all types of merchant tracked in the 2013 Internet Retailer Guide.

That percentage increased for catalog and call center retailers as it did for the three other merchant types-consumer brand manufacturer, retail chains, and web-only retailers.

An average of 35% of visits to the e-commerce sites of catalog and call center retailers came from search engines, an increase from 29% in 2011.  Consumer brand manufacturers also averaged 35% in 2012, up from 28% in 2011. Retail chains averaged 38% in 2012, compared with 31% in 2011. Web-only retailers averaged 36%, an increase from 30% in 2011.

A deeper dive into the data reveals more about how many consumers used search engines to find products on cataloger e-commerce sites. Among the nine catalogers selling computers and electronics, on average 41% of consumers used a search engine to find those sites in 2012.  That's an increase from 37% in 2011.

At 44%, the 10 retail chains that sell computers and electronic derive the highest percentage of shoppers from search engines. That's an increase from 37% in 2011. Next highest among retailers in this product category are the 15 web-only merchants at 38% in 2012, and 33% in 2011. Search engine shoppers averaged 35% for the 12 consumer brand manufacturers in this category, compared with 28% in 2011.

Among the 17 catalogers in the apparel/accessories category, 32% of their traffic came from search engines on average in 2012, compared with 26% in 2011. Consumer brand manufacturers in this category netted 37% in 2012, an increase from 29% in 2011. Retail chains were at 35%, compared with 26% in 2011, and web-only retailers came in at 27%, versus 22% in 2011.

Several factors likely have influenced the growth in shoppers coming from search engines in 2012 over 2011, says Experian. It could be better search engine marketing strategies by retailer, consumers doing more comparison-shopping and an overall growth in search, Experian says.

Paid search, for example, is growing. According to online marketing firm The Search Agency overall U.S.  paid search spending increased 21.6% in the first quarter of 2012 compared with the same quarter a year earlier.

The combined sales of Zulily Inc., and account for a small portion of total apparel and accessories category sales in  at just over 2%. However, the average web sales growth for the three retailers-all new to the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide-between 2011 and 2012 is a whopping 168.1%. That makes the retailers the top three newcomers in terms of year-over-year online sales growth in the apparel and accessories category in this year's Top 500 Guide.

Take Zulily, No. 77 in the No. 18 among the 136 retailers in the apparel and accessories category. Its sales account for 1.57% of apparel and accessory sales in and it posted 2012 online sales of $399.8 million, according to Internet Retailer estimates, up an estimated 166.5% from $150 million a year earlier. In November, the retailer launched an app for Apple Inc.'s iPad tablet.  Around 30% of purchases stemmed from mobile devices at the time of the app launch, the company said.

Posting even more impressive year-over-year sales growth is, No. 201 and ranking No. 64 among apparel and accessories retailers, and accounting for .39% of apparel and accessory sales. It sold $100 million worth of goods online last year, up 257.1% over 2011 sales of $28 million.

Streetwear retailer, ranked 430 in the 2013 guide and no 123 in the apparel and accessories category. .In  2012 web sales totaled $26.27 million, up 80.6% from $14.55 million a year earlier. Its sales accounted for .10% of Top 500 apparel and accessory retail sales

The sales growth comes on the heels of even stronger growth in 2011 in percentage terms. That year, the second full year of operation for, the retailer grew web sales 259% from $4.05 million to $14.54 million. The retailer says a new ad retargeting service from vendor FetchBack, e-mail campaigns to bring shoppers back who abandoned their carts, daily deals and starting to sell on such online marketplaces as eBay and Amazon all attributed to its sales growth in 2012.

Can you imagine, winning the lottery for a luxury brand new affordable apartment in Williamsburg

One of the most sought out residential neighborhoods in New York City is the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn.

Before the end of the year, a total of 229 brand new luxury residential rental apartments will be available located near Kent Avenue waterfront at 50 North 5th Street. The project is being developed by AREA Property Partners and partners.

Within the development will be a total of 46 permanently affordable units created through New York City's Inclusionary Housing program which will be reserved for low-income tenants. Twenty five percent of the 46 affordable units will be subject to New Yorkers displaced from their homes by Hurricane Sandy. The total 46 affordable units are subject to a lottery managed by the developer and overseen by the New York City Housing Preservation and Development.

The new building will have a landscaped interior courtyard, laundry room, bicycle parking on the ground floor, half-court basketball court, fitness center, tenants lounge and additional patio space on the second floor. The project also includes a yoga studio on the third floor and an outdoor roof deck.

 The 46 affordable units which will be offered through the housing lottery and will be affordable to households earning up to 60 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI), equal to a household income of $51,540 a year for a family of four. There are 9 studio units (household size: 1, monthly rent: $814, household income range: $29,829 - $36,120), 24 one-bedroom units (rent: $875, income: $31,989 - $36,120 for single member households, $31,989 - $41,280 for 2 members), and 13 two-bedroom units (rent: $1,059, income: $38,366 - $41,280 for single member households, $38,366 - $46,440 for 2 member households, and $38,366 - $51,540 for 3 member households) . As I stated earlier there is a preference for qualified household displayed by Hurricane Sandy for 12 units in the building. Additionally, qualified residents of Brooklyn Community Board 1 will receive preference for 50 percent of the units.

Qualified applicants will be required to meet income guidelines and additional selection criteria to qualify.

To request an application, mail a self-addressed envelope to: Housing Application Fifty N. Fifth, c/o 260 Powers Street, Brooklyn, New York 11211 or you may

Download an application from:

Completed applications must be returned by regular mail, postmarked by July 1st, 2013.

While interest rates for financing continue to be record lows, property & casualty insurance costs rising

Even though the rates on the 10 year treasury are currently at its fifty two week high, rates to refinance commercial real estate continue to be at record low rates. Increased competition by local and national banks, insurance companies and CMBS has resulted in continued record low interest rates for commercial real estate.

While financing rates are low, real estate taxes, water charges the property and liability insurance marketplace is going through significant tightening in New York.  Philip Glick, SVP, ECBM Insurance Brokers & Consultants reported that both liability and property premiums are rising significantly for property owners and developers, particularly on new construction projects.

Insurance companies are increasing premiums and deductibles in light of Hurricane Sandy. Wind storm and flood deductibles as well as premiums will be increasing for properties at or near the water line.

In addition to the increased premiums for coverage, a number of insurance companies are reducing the scope of coverage. This is particularly prevalent for general liability insurance where new policy exclusions are being added.

06/17/2013 - 19:45


Stoler Report

Want more news about Stoler Report? Click here