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Online shopping began its steady growth in 1994 after new security measures allowed for safe ecommerce transactions to occur online. Surprisingly, Pizza Hut was one of the first major companies to adopt ecommerce by offering online ordering through their website.

As online shopping grew in popularity, brick-and-mortar stores began to offer their products online, and entire companies were created to facilitate web sales. In 1995 Jeff Bezos launched Amazon.com which is now the world's largest online retailer - they brought in $48 billion in 2011 alone. Online auction site eBay also opened shop in 1995. Expedia was founded in 1996 as a small division of Microsoft, and Zappos.com opened it's digital doors in 1999.

With today's high-res photos and speedy shopping carts, it's easy to forget how primitive most ecommerce stores used to be. Check out how these big brand-names sites looked before they became popular. Although they seem simplistic, unintuitive, and kind of ugly, at the time they were cutting-edge, and they paved the way for what ecommerce is today.

Dell - 1996


Pizza Hut - 1997


Expedia - 1997


Zappos - 2000


Netflix - 2002


Apple - 1997


American Apparel - 2001


GAP - 1996


Wal-Mart - 2001


Toys-R-Us - 2000


Diapers.com - 2001


Barnes & Noble - 1999


Best Buy - 1997


Zazzle - 2004


Amazon - 2006


Staples - 1997


J Crew - 1996


Buy.com - 1999


Sony - 1996


Macy's - 1999


Nike - 1998


Target - 1997


Wine.com - 1997


American Eagle Outfitters - 1999


CD Baby - 1998


LL Bean - 1999


eBags - 1999


Ancestry - 1998


Coach - 2000


Overstock - 1999


Threadless - 2002


1-800 Flowers.com - 1999


Ashley Madison - 2002


CD Now - 1999


The Hudsons Bay Company - 2001


Art.com - 2000


Shopify - 2008


All screenshots from Internet Archive's Wayback Machine.