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VeriSign Announces Online Holiday Shopping Statistics

VeriSign Reports $2.2 Billion in Online Purchases During the First Full Week of the Prime Holiday Shopping Season

December 17, 2004; 12:48 AM

MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA. - December 17, 2004 - (DomainInformer) - VeriSign, Inc. (Nasdaq: VRSN), the leading provider of intelligent infrastructure services for the Internet and telecommunications networks, today released new e-commerce data showing that the first week of the prime holiday shopping season accounted for $2.2 billion of online purchases. The two full weeks preceding the holidays are traditionally the top shopping days during the season. This year, the weeks of December 6 and December 13 represent this peak shopping period. In tracking online spending and transactions during this first week, VeriSign research indicates that significantly more consumers turned to online sales channels this season. The total volume of sales transactions recorded during the week of December 6, 2004 reached 28.9 million, a 21 percent increase as compared to the week of December 8, 2003, the equivalent holiday shopping week from last year.

VeriSign's latest statistics are based on the analysis of online sales volume processed through VeriSign Payment Services, which comprises more than 35 percent of all North American e-commerce and represents in excess of 120,000 online retailers. Data reported from the first prime week of holiday shopping in 2004 includes statistics from Monday, December 6 through Sunday, December 12. Additional data issued today from VeriSign include:

Category Comparisons

VeriSign tracks year-over-year merchant activity in key e-commerce categories. Key findings this year include the following changes in sales figures from Thanksgiving 2004 through the first full week of December 2004 as compared to the equivalent time period in 2003:

Apparel sales increased 22 percent.
Electronics sales remained relatively flat at a four percent increase; however, it carried the highest ticket price of $294 as compared to all the other categories.
Entertainment sales (music and video downloads) increased 30 percent.
Photo printing and sharing sales increased dramatically by 95 percent.
General retail sales increased 13 percent.
Spending Patterns

Monday, December 6 was the peak day of the week, accounting for 5.4 million transactions, surpassing the "Black Monday" results VeriSign collected during the 2004 Thanksgiving weekend.

The total number of purchases from Thanksgiving 2004 through Sunday, December 12, 2004 was 43.7 million.

The total amount spent from Thanksgiving 2004 through Sunday, December 12, 2004 was $4.6 billion, a 15 percent increase as compared to the same period in 2003 (Thursday, November 27, 2003 to Sunday, December 14, 2003).

The average sale amount was $140 during the time period from Thanksgiving 2004 through Sunday, December 12, 2004. This represents a $10 increase in the average sale amount as compared to the same time period in 2003 (Thursday, November 27, 2003 to Sunday, December 14, 2003).

"More consumers are shopping online and are now comfortable in purchasing content related products in addition to traditional goods this holiday season," said Trevor Healy, vice president, payment services, VeriSign. "We have seen some winning categories online, including digital photography and music and video downloads. These content categories are clearly leveraging the Internet as a medium for commerce this year, showing substantial growth compared to the holiday season in 2003."

VeriSign's ability to correlate intelligence gathered across the Internet enables the company to identify market trends such as changes in Internet shopping patterns that may impact vendors with an online presence. As such, in addition to reporting on the week of December 6, VeriSign will also issue data collected during the week of December 13, comprising statistics from the entire 2004 prime holiday shopping season. On November 30, VeriSign issued e-commerce statistics regarding the impact of online shopping on traditional "brick-and-mortar" retail shopping events such as the Friday after Thanksgiving, commonly known as "Black Friday." These statistics are currently available in VeriSign's News Area.

About VeriSign
VeriSign, Inc. (Nasdaq: VRSN), operates intelligent infrastructure services that enable individuals and businesses to find, connect, secure, and transact across today's complex global networks. Additional news and information about the company is available at

For more information, contact:
VeriSign Media Relations: Karen McGuirk Regan, [email protected], 781-696-2834
VeriSign Investor Relations: Tom McCallum, [email protected], 650-426-3744

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