Growth in online shopping here to stay

While pandemic-related closures and social distancing restrictions have had a devastating impact on shopping centres and stores, new research suggests the ecommerce sector will remain strong.

Two-thirds (65 per cent) of Aussies say they will shop more online than in-store in the next 12 months, according to a survey by Hubbed.

The results reveal that, in the next 12 months, 34 per cent of Aussies would shop more online (than in-store) than they did during their state shutdown. A further 31 per cent would shop more online than they did before their state shutdown.

The younger the shopper, the more likely they will make the shift from shopping in-store: 45 per cent of 18-50-year-olds would shop more online than in-store now than during the shutdowns, compared with just 19 per cent of over-50s. Similarly, 61 per cent of 18-50s would shop online more in the next year than before the shutdowns, compared with 32 per cent of over-50s.

CEO and founder of Hubbed, David McLean, says it is clear that the growth in online shopping, which has been exacerbated by Covid-19, is here to stay.

“The constraints that have been placed on online retailers have highlighted the need for them to be more proactive and agile in streamlining the consumer’s online shopping experience via technology and alternative delivery options,” he says.

Online retailers have been required to adjust to the significant increase in online deliveries, while navigating consumer delivery expectations, at a time when state government’s Covid Safe restrictions have impacted speed and ability to deliver. Shopping cart abandonment is another major challenge. In March 2020 alone, 88 per cent of online shopping orders were abandoned at check-out, primarily because of inflexible delivery options or costs.

“It is also evident that customers want more delivery choices, which will, in turn, support the growth in ecommerce. Retailers should seriously consider their customer delivery choices, such as supporting the use of Click & Collect.

“Ultimately, offering alternative delivery options could be the game-changer to better supporting online demand for the foreseeable future,” he concludes.