Let’s go shopping…online | ACMA

Let’s go shopping…online

A new ACMA research report offers our first look at the developing online shopping market in Australia, from both a supply and demand perspective. Key findings from e-commerce marketplace in Australia: Online shopping include:

  • Growing online participation-59 per cent of adults went online to purchase a good or service in the six months to April 2011, compared to 53 per cent in the six months to November 2009.
  • Increasing online engagement from businesses-at April 2011, 59 per cent of Australian small to medium enterprises had taken orders online from consumers. Businesses are also increasing efforts to leverage social media, largely for product and company profiling purposes.
  • Defining who shops online-the majority of adult internet users (62 per cent) purchased a good or service online in the six months to April 2011. Internet users aged from 35 to 44 were more likely than any other age group to have shopped online. Those with higher incomes were also more likely to have shopped online, as were internet users in remote Australian locations.

Purchase of goods and services online in the last six months to April 2011 by location

Purchase of goods and services online in the last six months to April 2011 by location

Note: Excludes don't know responses. Relates to consumers in households with a fixed-line telephone.
Major city refers to the capital cities excluding Darwin and Hobart, and includes centres such as Newcastle. Inner regional refers to centres such as Launceston, Hobart, Mandurah, Ballarat, etc. Outer regional refers to centres such as Darwin, Albany, Geraldton, etc. For more information see www.doctorconnect.gov.au/internet/otd/Publishing.nsf/Content/locator.
Source: ACMA-commissioned survey, April 2011, n=1,770.

Why we shop online

Convenience and price are the main drivers for consumers to shop online. Not trusting the internet, having no need to shop online or preferring to shop in-store are the main barriers to consumers shopping online.

How we shop online

Online shopping is predominately conducted via computers, with mobile phone internet
e-commerce largely confined to banking and bill payment.

What we buy online

Travel goods, tickets and accommodation are the most popular items purchased online, followed by clothes, shoes and personal items, although there is some variation based on the age and location of the purchaser.

Where we shop online

The majority of online shoppers in Australia continue to buy from Australian websites. However, the proportion of online shoppers accessing overseas sites has increased. This is likely to be a result of the growth of the Australian dollar. Supporting local industry is the leading reason why people shopped on mainly Australian websites (30 per cent).

Location of websites from which Australians purchased goods and services

Location of websites from which Australians purchased goods and services

Note: Excludes 'don't know' responses. Relates to consumers in households with a fixed-line telephone.
Does not total 100 per cent due to rounding
Source: ACMA-commissioned survey, November 2009, n=916 and April 2011, n=885.

The report is the first of three research reports to complement the ACMA's Communications report 2010-11, produced to fulfill reporting obligations under Section 105 of the Telecommunications Act 1997. e-commerce marketplace in Australia: Online shopping is available in Word and pdf.

Last updated: 25 May 2017