According to the Wall Street Journal Apple has gained the number two spot in online retail sales revenue, passing Staples to come in just behind Amazon. Considering Amazon makes all of their money online, and Apple has an impressive retail channel as well, and sells through other businesses (including Staples, Amazon, and BestBuy), this accomplishment is even more impressive. Recently, Apple has offered trade-in incentives as part of their effort to bring in more direct iPhone business, at the expense of wireless carriers and other retailers. Clearly, this is paying off.
Of course the App Store and iTunes are part of this online revenue, and that has taken off dramatically. Additionally, consumers are increasingly turning to online sales versus retail, for Black Friday shopping and throughout the year. Mobile payments make purchases via iPhones easier as well. And anticipated updates to allow authentication via Touch ID should help too. All of this bodes well for increased online sales for Apple, and for competitors.