Press Release

<< Back Releases Holiday Shopping Patterns to Date
Top Sellers Show Customers Seeking Low Prices This Holiday Season Interactive Study Reveals Consumers Are More Focused on Value as They Do Their Holiday Shopping, Unaware of Shorter Shopping Season

SEATTLE--Nov. 29, 2002-- The Friday after Thanksgiving marks the traditional kickoff of the holiday shopping season, the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas. But according to's (NASDAQ: AMZN) Holiday Delight-O-Meter, Amazon customers worldwide have already ordered more than 24 million items (November 1-28, 2002). While the expected big hits and blockbusters are topping's holiday sales charts thus far, among them are a number of heavily discounted items reflecting consumers' attraction to value this holiday season.

According to a new study conducted by Harris Interactive® for, more than one-half (51%) of Americans say they are looking for lower prices this holiday season, while one-third (32%) are looking for more value, such as free shipping or bonus products, with their purchases.'s Top Sellers Since November 1, 2002 (based on units ordered):

  • Holiday Shoppers Ring Up Cell Phone Sales: Cell phone unit sales for November are over four times higher than last November. Consumers love's low pricing, which has left many of the newest, state-of-the-art cell phones free after rebates. Top sellers include the Samsung S105 (free after rebates), Sony Ericsson T68i ($49.99 after $250 savings in rebates) and the Motorola T720i ($49.99 after $250 savings in rebates). Cell phones with color screens are also a customer favorite this holiday. Over 60 percent of the cell phones sold this month feature a color screen for enhanced Web browsing, increased functionality for application downloads, and brighter and easier-to-navigate menus.
  • Plummeting Prices Drive DVD Player Sales:'s unit sales of DVD players have increased 70 percent year-over-year for the month of November due to the products' lower price points. With quality DVD players priced below $100, the overall value to the consumer has never been higher, and multifunctional players like the Toshiba SD2805 5-disc carousel DVD and CD player have been flying off the virtual shelves. Originally retailing at $229.99 and sold elsewhere for $139.99 and above, this player is available for $99.99 at and has been the bestselling electronics item since November 1.
  • DVDs Rule This Holiday Season: Five of the ten bestselling items overall at are DVDs - not surprising as, according to Adams Media Research, about 37 million DVD players will have been sold in the U.S. by the end of 2002. DVDs tied to theatrical releases are especially popular, with The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (platinum extended edition and collector's gift set) and Star Wars, Episode II: Attack of the Clones (widescreen and full-screen editions) all among's 10 bestselling items since November 1. Also in the top 10 are hot new releases like Spider-Man (widescreen and full-screen editions) and Band of Brothers.
  • Customers Choose Boxed Sets for Low Prices and Greater Value: Value-conscious customers are also snatching up boxed DVD sets at this holiday season. James Bond 007 Special Edition DVD Collection, Back to the Future - The Complete Trilogy, The Simpsons - The Complete Second Season and Babylon 5 - The Complete First Season are all selling for less than $100 at and are among the top 25 bestsellers in's DVD store.
  • Fall Releases at 40 Percent Off Top Books Bestseller Lists:'s top 10 bestselling books since November 1 are filled with fall releases from popular authors, including James Patterson's Four Blind Mice, Janet Evanovich's Visions of Sugar Plums and Allison Pearson's I Don't Know How She Does It: The Life of Kate Reddy, Working Mother, all available at 40 percent off the list price. It also appears many may forgo the traditional turkey and stuffing for Italian holiday fare this year, as The Sopranos Family Cookbook, compiled by Artie Bucco, is also among's bestselling books to date this holiday season.
  • Kitchenware Sales are Cooking: Holiday shoppers are taking advantage of large discounts and bonus products included with purchases in's Kitchen & Housewares store. The top 25 bestselling Kitchen items include the Le Creuset pumpkin casserole ($99.99, with bonus seven-piece utensil set, a $54.99 value), Calphalon's Commercial Hard-Anodized collectors edition 12-inch everyday pan with cover ($39.99, compared with $168 list price) and the Metrokane Rabbit corkscrew with foilcutter ($49.95, compared with $79.99 list price).
  • One-Stop Shopping for Apparel & Accessories a Perfect Fit for Holiday Shoppers: In its first holiday season,'s recently opened Apparel & Accessories store has exceeded sales expectations to date. Top-selling merchandise includes the all-weather mocs from Lands' End, the raglan V-neck sweater from Gap, Norsport wrinkle-free chinos from Nordstrom and fleece half-zip pullovers from Old Navy.

To see real-time holiday top sellers in Toys, Computer & Video Games, Electronics, Books, Music, DVD and all of's stores, and to learn more about's Free Super Saver Shipping on orders over $25 and other holiday offers, visit ( Customers can take advantage of Free Super Saver Shipping through December 10 and still receive their orders in time for the holidays.

Additional Survey Findings's research also found that an overwhelming majority of Americans (85%) do not realize they have six fewer days to complete their holiday shopping than last year, as the 2002 holiday shopping season (Thanksgiving to Christmas) lasts only 26 days, compared with 32 days in 2001. The average American will spend 15.5 hours, almost two full working days, shopping for and sending gifts - time that one-half (51%) of Americans would prefer to spend with friends and family. Additional survey findings include:

  • Forty percent of Americans admit to taking time away from work - leaving early, arriving late, taking a long lunch or calling in sick - to get their holiday shopping done.
  • Seventy percent of Americans find crowded malls and long lines to be the worst part of holiday shopping.
  • If everyone had a magic genie to either go to the mall, send holiday cards, wrap or send gifts or attend holiday parties for them this holiday season, two in five Americans (40%) would want that genie to go shopping at the mall.
  • Nearly half (47%) of Americans are making a budget this season, and one-third say they will stick pretty close to their budget because of the economic climate.

Study Methodology

Harris Interactive conducted an omnibus study via telephone with a regionally representative sample of 1,000 Americans ages 18 or older between October 25 and October 28, 2002. The margin of error for the total sample is plus/minus 3.1 percent.

About Holiday Delight-O-Meter

The Delight-O-Meter tracks the approximate number of items ordered at domains worldwide, such as,,,, and, as well as at cobranded domains such as and Items tracked by the Delight-O-Meter include items ordered at domains from third-party sellers, such as items ordered in the and Target stores on and from Amazon Marketplace individual and business sellers, as well as items ordered on domains, such as books ordered from's store at The Delight-O-Meter excludes certain items, including gift certificates, items ordered from mail catalogs, items not owned by ordered from domains (such as, and items ordered through the cobranded Health & Beauty, Cars and Travel stores on The Delight-O-Meter is not adjusted for items ordered that are subsequently canceled or returned. The Delight-O-Meter debuted on November 12, 2002, with a count of over 8 million items ordered since November 1. The Delight-O-Meter is updated continually, but lags actual items ordered depending on the item. The Delight-O-Meter should not be viewed or used as a predictor or indicator of revenue or other financial information relating to

About, a Fortune 500 company based in Seattle, opened its virtual doors on the World Wide Web in July 1995 and today offers Earth's Biggest Selection. seeks to be the world's most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online at a great price. and sellers list millions of unique new and used items in categories such as apparel and accessories, electronics, computers, kitchenware and housewares, books, music, DVDs, videos, cameras and photo items, toys, baby items and baby registry, software, computer and video games, cell phones and service, tools and hardware, travel services, magazine subscriptions and outdoor living items. operates five international Web sites:,,, and

This announcement contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Actual results may differ significantly from management's expectations. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that include, among others, risks related to potential future losses, significant amount of indebtedness, competition, strategic alliances and business combinations, seasonality, potential fluctuations in operating results and rate of growth, foreign-currency exchange rates, management of potential growth, system interruption, international expansion, consumer trends, fulfillment center optimization, inventory, limited operating history, government regulation and taxation, fraud and Payments, and new business areas. More information about factors that potentially could affect's financial results is included in's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2001, and all subsequent filings.

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