Online Chinese shoppers spent 16.2 billion yuan ($2.3 billion) in 19 major cities in the first half of 2008, China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC) said on June 16.
The findings were based on a survey carried out in four municipalities directly under the central government -- Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin and Chongqing -- and 15 developed cities such as Changchun, Dalian, Nanjing, Hangzhou, Jinan and Guangzhou, among others.
About 8.4 billion yuan, more than half of the total, came from male consumers, while 3.1 billion was attributed to students.
The consumer-to-consumer (C2C) site Taobao.com, a subsidiary of online portal Alibaba.com in which Yahoo! invested $1 billion in 2005, was the nation's dominant Internet retailer. It had an online shopping penetration rate of 81.5 percent.
Dangdang.com was second with 16.6 percent, followed by Joyo, Amazon's China subsidiary, with 13.6 percent. Eachnet, owned by Tom Online and eBay, had 8.4 percent, while Tencent's C2C site Paipai.com was 7.2 percent.
According to the CNNIC, 91 percent of online shoppers who had heard of Taobao had made purchases at the site, while 61.4 percent of those familiar with Joyo had shopped there.