Aussie internet spend-up increases

14_Aussie internet spend-up increases

Melbourne

(Australian Associated Press)

Australians shoppers are spending up big time, shelling out more than $100 billion in the past financial year.

Our total spending, whether online or in-store, increased five per cent compared with the previous 12 months.

However, we might be spending more but we’re not visiting stores as often.

Australians made a combined 1.34 billion trips to the shops, around 170 million fewer than we did five years ago, according to Roy Morgan Research’s latest State of the Nation: Australian Retail report released on Tuesday.

Hardest hit have been the stores facing the strongest digital disruption: Newsagents got almost 100 million fewer visitors in the past year than in 2010, and the number of music store visits fell by over a third.

Australians spent an estimated $37.8 billion online over the last financial year. Overall – we increased our expenditure online by 9.7 per cent compared with year to June 2014.

Online shopping was once considered a threat to local retailers, as retail dollars flowed overseas.

However today an estimated 72 per cent of our online spend (around $27 billion) stays in Australia, whether going to home-grown online-only sites or the internet offerings of local retailers.

While visits to most bricks-and-mortar retail stores have declined (or been replaced by website visitation), we are making more trips to the supermarket.

Australian grocery buyers together made an estimated 1.9 billion separate trips to the supermarket over the year, almost 300 million more than in 2009/10.

The annual grocery market is now valued at $102.2 billion the vast majority of which ($88.9 billion) is spent at supermarkets.

Roy Morgan Research chief executive Michele Levine says the retail industry is shifting to an “omni-channel” perspective.

“Consumers don’t care about the battle between online and traditional bricks-and-mortar stores for them, it’s all shopping,” she says.

“Our most successful retailers, from niche online-only sellers to national chains to international juggernauts, are those that can supply the demand from all angles.”

The Roy Morgan retail results stem from 50,000 interviews over the year, 80 per cent of those face to face.

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