Besides seeking expert opinions, we also looked at a few trends generated by our own Top 101 CE Retailers list. Looking at data over the past five years of lists, we focused on the consumer electronics sales gains from 2016 to 2020 of the top five retailers by 2020 CE sales.
At No. 3 on this year’s Top 101, Apple has seen an estimated 128.1-percent rise in consumer electronics sales since 2016. Even with an overall decline in iPhone sales over the past five years, the company continues to break records.
According to Wedbush Securities and USA Today, the iPhone was the top-selling consumer electronics device in 2020, with 195 million units purchased (though not all at stateside Apple stores). Even though more iPhones, at least in the U.S. and Canada, are purchased directly from wireless carriers and stores like Best Buy, the sheer number of sold units, not to mention all the Macs, Apple TVs, and iPads, is significant to move the Apple Store sales needle.
Warehouse club Costco, which was No. 7 on this year’s Top 101 list, experienced a jump in CE sales of 118.3 percent, due in part to the increasingly affordable pricing of big-screen TVs and laptops over the past half-decade, and also more recently to increased demand for TVs, appliances, computers, and other devices needed for a homebound 24/7 lifestyle.
And, no surprise — Amazon, which took the Number One spot on the 2020 Top 101 list, has seen growth of CE sales rise 140.23 percent over the past five years. More recently, we calculated a nearly 40 percent rise in CE sales between 2019 and 2020.
That’s impressive, but not quite as impressive-sounding as last year’s 200-percent rise in overall revenue, which encompasses such non-CE sectors such as the company’s music, streaming, and content production divisions, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Twitch, Diapers.com, Zappos, and Whole Foods. Oh, and something called “books.”