Despite the bum economy, Internet retail sales will rise 16.6 % in 2008 to $204 billion, about the same rate of growth as in 2007, according to the latest annual study by Forrester Research. That's way above the 3.5% growth in overall retail sales predicted for 2008 by the National Retail Federation. The biggest online categories: apparel (due to rise by $3.9 billion, or 17%), computers (up $3.2 billion, or 15%) and autos (up $2.5 billion, or 15%).
Of course, "e-tailing," despite becoming more and more prevalent over the last few years, still accounts for less than 5% of the overall retail market in the U.S. The relatively small dollar base all but assures double-digit annual growth.