Boost for online shopping as three states close down retail stores

As NSW, VIC and SA shut down retail stores once again, consumers have no choice but to shop online with almost four million households having bought something online in the last few weeks, up six per cent compared to last year.

Australia Post general manager parcel and express services, Ben Franzi, says the growth in online shopping in areas experiencing Covid-19 restrictions was similar to the trends seen in the midst of the pandemic last year.

“We know that when restrictions tighten people buy more online,” he says. “In fact, during lockdowns online purchase growth almost doubles when compared to non-lockdown periods according to our data.

“With this latest wave of the pandemic affecting different areas of the country, we’ve seen different growth patterns as many Australians experienced tight public health restrictions for the first time.”

Indeed, suburbs such as Austral in New South Wales, Mooloolah in Queensland and Margaret River in Western Australia and Coconut Grove in the Northern Territory have each recorded the highest growth for their respective states in the two weeks to 3 July 2021, each growing above the national average of 11 per cent.

Category wise, home and garden (+12 per cent), fashion and apparel (+14.8 per cent) and variety stores (+10.7 per cent) as well as baby (+33.7 per cent) and pet (+26.1 per cent) products are most popular with online shoppers.

Online shopping growth for the 12 months to 30 June 2021 topped 31.8 per cent almost on par with the previous financial year which landed at 33.2 per cent.