U.S. e-commerce will reach nearly $249 billion in revenue by 2014 at an annual compound annual growth rate of 10 percent, Forrester predicts. 2009’s U.S. e-commerce sales totaled $130 billion. Analysts predict between 8 and 1

5 percent growth for 2010.

Forrester predicts that, while has e-commerce matured, it will continue to drive overall retail growth.

“Much of the overall retail sector’s growth in both the US and the EU over the next five years will come from the Internet,” said Forrester Research Vice President and Principal Analyst Sucharita Mulpuru.

“To maximize that growth, eBusiness professionals will have to help enable a multichannel strategy that responds to consumers’ increased desire to hop between the offline and online worlds and their increasing mobile and social behaviors. The retail innovators over the next five years will demonstrate customer enablement across all touchpoints, not just via a PC-based Web browser.”

The top categories for U.S. online retail, accounting for 40 percent of total sales, are apparel, footwear, and accessories; consumer electronics; and consumer hardware, software, and peripherals.

Forrester predicts that e-commerce will account for 8 percent of overall retail sales by 2014, and that 53 percent of all retail sales will be influenced by online research.

What would be interesting to see is the difference in growth between mobile and PC-based e-commerce. While consumers are slowly adopting mobile shopping, many are taking advantage of smartphones to comparison shop within brick-and-mortar stores. Forrester notes that shoppers who begin shopping online and finish in the store are less satisfied than those who do both in the store. Wonder how smartphones play into that equation?

By Mark Alvarez