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Shopping in the Digital Age

Amazon and eBay are the clear online leaders, but brick-and-mortar stores aren't ready to concede the retail battle.

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More and more shoppers continue to go online to find their wares instead of traveling to traditional brick-and-mortar stores. E-commerce retailers that are well-capitalized and that have a strong distribution infrastructure are proving to be a disruptive factor in the retail industry.

In 2012, online sales in the United States totaled $225 billion, with Amazon.com (AMZN) representing almost a third of that in terms of gross merchandise volume. EBay (EBAY) had a gross merchandise volume of about $75 billion. Globally, e-commerce sales are around $1 trillion. But with total global commerce at $10 trillion, e-commerce still only has a small piece of the retail pie. Amazon and eBay both have been enjoying revenue growth of more than 20%, and there's still plenty of room for these and other e-commerce companies to grow.

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Basili Alukos does not own shares in any of the securities mentioned above. Find out about Morningstar’s editorial policies.