Coronavirus Real-Time Ecommerce Trends - Updated March 2020

Coronavirus and Ecommerce – Real-time Data, Trends, Predictions, and More

Last updated: November 21, 2022

Crazy times right now. Coronavirus (or COVID-19) is now being officially classified as a global pandemic. For many of you, this is likely the first major disruption to your business/supply chain. Many businesses have been hit incredibly hard (i.e. restaurants, mom & pop local businesses, etc.). With the majority of our clients at Wallaroo being in the eCommerce space, we decided to build out a hub of data/trends that could hopefully serve as a guidepost to others in the industry. We will be constantly updating this page with new data and our findings across eCommerce. So this post has three sections:

  1. Data across our eCommerce clients (ROAS, CPMs, CPCs, daily changes, etc.)
  2. Trends (macro trends based on the data we are gathering)
  3. Predictions (what we think will happen in the rest of Q2, Q3/Q4, and beyond)

One more note before the meat: eCommerce as a percentage of total retail sales in the U.S. was 11% in 2019. Right now, it has jumped to 30%. JPMorgan thinks that’s a long-term shift. Adobe just reported that eCommerce sales increased 49% month over month. So if you’re running an eCommerce brand, now is the time to scale.

Want to be notified of the latest updates to this page? Have data you want to add to this set? Interested in scaling your eCommerce brand with experts that are always on the cutting edge? Enter your email below and we’ll be in touch.

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       1. DATA

The dataset below is compiled from a sampling of our eCommerce clients. The public Google Sheet is HERE. We will be updating the sheet every day. The data is from paid social advertising campaigns, only pulling spend from Facebook/Instagram.

Here is how to interpret the data: Green is good, white is average, red is not so good. The colors are in relation to Year to Date performance. So on March 16, you see that CPMs are $5.74 – this is the lowest we’ve seen all year. Why? Less bidders in the auction right now. Cost Per Clicks are also down right now, so that is good as well. But even last week/weekend, the average ROAS and Purchase Conversion Rate were quite solid. Note – we have taken out some outliers (related to big sales or product launches) from this dataset to normalize it. So check out the data below, CLICK HERE to view the real-time dataset on a Google Sheet, and email me at brandon at wallaroomedia dot com if you have any thoughts or questions about anything.


      2. TRENDS

What macro trends can we gather from these numbers? Obviously CPMs and CPCs have been trending down (good) over the last week, which is when the Coronavirus really started taking off here in the US. Aside from a day or two here and there, Return on Ad Spend, Add to Carts, and Purchase Conversions have all held pretty steady as well. Keep in mind, we are not very exposed to the travel industry (who has been hit hard with everything), nor are we exposed to “household essentials” (who are currently spiking). So this is a pretty good sample of your more “typical” eCommerce brand, i.e. apparel, beauty, accessories, shoes, etc.


We believe that everything related to the Coronavirus will be a catalyst for further eCommerce growth throughout 2020 and beyond. As Web Smith states below eCom penetration as a percentage of total retail is still quite small in the US, at just 11%. Whereas in China it’s almost 37%. As fears related to Coronavirus calm down and everyone gets more accustomed to staying at home, overall shopping trends will normalize. But those shopping trends will be almost entirely online now. And as the quarantine lifts and people start going out more again, those newly built online shopping habits (or further deepened habits) won’t just disappear. They will carry on. Web is predicting an almost 50% jump in eCommerce sales by next year, to 15%. We believe it could reach 20%+ penetration. [Update on May 5, 2020 – BAC just reported that eCom is at 30% of all retail right now!)

Have any questions? Thoughts or data you want to add to this piece? Run an eCommerce brand that isn’t hitting the numbers above? Get in contact with us today!

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More Insights From Around the Web

Common Thread has put together a great piece covering everything related to what’s happening right now. Here are a couple graphs from their post that talk about revenue improvements and overall eCommerce increases.




They dive more into industry-specific trends as well. Within also has been producing some great content around this movement. Below is what they’ve been seeing from Omnichannel and Pure-Play eCommerce brands.



Shipbob has added some great month-over-month and week-over-week eCommerce sales data by industry. Below are some snapshots from the Beauty and Baby Product industries.



ShipHero is doing something similar as well. Below is some data that they’ve gathered.



This COVID-19 Consumer Impact Tracker from Glimpse is really cool. They are showing real-time trends that are being impacted by the coronavirus.


Spate added another trends tracker themselves. Theirs is interesting because is shows how trends have shifted from a month or two ago. Check out an example below.


Attentive put together some trends they’re seeing.


Yotpo aggregated their top findings across the board.


Stackline put together some great information as well.

Web Smith obtained data from emarsys and GoodData that shows week over week ecommerce growth. The numbers are looking very good.

Week over week eCommerce growth from Bazaar Voice.

US E-Commerce Sales Surpass $1 Trillion, according to the Department of Commerce. The market has nearly doubled in size in three years. Ecommerce is 25% higher than expected before COVID – now 21% of retail.

ecommerce salesHave any questions? Thoughts or data you want to add to this piece? Run an eCommerce brand that isn’t hitting the numbers above? Get in contact with us today!

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Final thoughts: Goldman Sachs predicts further eCommerce acceleration, there’s been five years of growth in three months, quarterly eCom numbers keep skyrocketing. Need help? Contact us today! brandon at wallaroomedia dot com or (801) 890-2591.

Holiday 2020 notes:

Ecommerce sales jumped 50% year over year!

Ecommerce is now $1 out of ever $5 spent, according to Mastercard.


Brandon Doyle

CEO + Founder