In a sign the retail apocalypse may not be abating yet, online furniture, housewares, and home goods supplier Wayfair Inc. (NYSE:W) registered explosive sales growth year over year in this morning's third-quarter 2020 earnings report. Its $3.8 billion net revenue represents a 66.5% leap above Q3 2019's $2.31 billion in sales and a 4.16% positive surprise above the Wall Street analyst consensus estimate reported by Zacks Equity Research.

Earnings per share (EPS) rocketed even further ahead of analyst predictions. The positive surprise of the company's $2.30 third-quarter 2020 EPS amounted to 183.95%, according to Zacks. Last year, by contrast, Q3 yielded a per-share loss of $2.33. While the metrics remain excellent, earnings per share have declined somewhat from Q2 2020's $3.13.

A red forklift moving a large box, possibly containing furniture, at a warehouse.

Image source: Getty Images.

Growth was practically identical in the company's U.S. and international segments. The number of "active customers" shopping through Wayfair's family of websites also increased significantly, rising 50.9% year over year to 28.8 million individuals. The number of repeat customers edged up somewhat over 2019 -- from 67.3% to 71.9% of orders.

The press release notes "momentum" remains strong as does cash flow. COVID-19 lockdowns, reduced travel, and the shuttering of many typical entertainment venues may help Wayfair maintain its positive trend through 2020 into 2021 and beyond. For example, the North American outdoor furniture market is expected to register a 4.6% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) through 2027, according to ReportLinker research, while the European wall-decor market will experience a 9% CAGR through 2024, according to Technavio, reaching approximately $9.6 billion by then.

Both online shopping and furniture-demand trends appear to favor continued Wayfair success through the medium term at a minimum. 

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