Apple Store app on an Apple iPhone 5s in front of an Apple Store

Apple's success in online retail is climbing steadily according to the latest numbers. Of course Amazon still has a massive lead, but online only constitutes about 10% of Apple's business. Overall, Apple's e-commerce revenue was bumped up to $18.3 billion in the last year, which is up 24% from the year prior. This was enough to overtake Staples and Walmart, who earned $10.3 and $10.04 billion respectively within the same period. It's also interesting to note that Costco climbed over Best Buy in online sales too.

The bump comes courtesy of an accounting change on the part of Apple, who for the first time broke out online hardware sales from their total retail sales. Combined with Apple's App Store and iTunes Store, that was enough to bump Apple's online sales up from the fourth position to the second position.

The fact that Apple can occupy such a relatively small technological niche while still beating out major retailers with mass appeal is truly impressive. While nobody really expects them to work their way up to Amazon's level, it will take a long time for others to get up to Apple's online sales numbers.

How many of you guys have ordered something from Apple online? Would you rather pick your stuff up at the Apple store directly, or is it tough finding one close to you?

Via: Wall Street Journal