Australians buying more online but hacking remains a huge concern

Peter Terlato 13 September 2016

Hacker online shopping cartoon

Customers worried their credit card details will be stolen.

A new study has found that more than 7 in 10 Australians made purchases online this year. However, privacy is still the leading concern for online shoppers.

Sensis' e-Business Report 2016, a survey of 1,000 small to medium businesses and 800 Aussie consumers, revealed the number of online shoppers grew to 71% of Australians this year, up from 61% in 2015.

Although men spent more than women when shopping online in 2016, male spending fell 45% from $6,500 down to just $3,600. Female spending rose 22.5% from $2,400 to $3,100.

Of items bought or booked online, women were more likely to purchase books, hairdressing appointments, groceries, cosmetics, clothing, accessories and shoes.

Men were more interested in buying airline tickets, take-away food, electronic equipment, DVDs or games and music.

Online hacking and the safety of e-commerce data, such as stolen credit card information, is the greatest concern for 85% of Aussie shoppers.

While hacking is also the biggest worry for small to medium businesses (SMBs), fewer (35%) regard it as a major concern than last year (46%).

More than a third (34%) said hacking was a minor concern for their business this year, compared with a little over a quarter (26%) in 2015.

Aussies love shopping locally, despite overseas purchases modestly increasing, up from 21% in 2015 to 23% in 2016.

The introduction of streaming businesses such as Netflix, Spotify and Apple Music have had a significant impact on digital buying habits within the home.

The penetration of digital TVs fell from 70% in 2015 to 61% in 2016, pay TV subscriptions declined 4% to 27% and 3D TV slipped from 17% to 11% year-on-year.

One in four Australians are also displeased with their current internet speeds.

If you're looking to speed up your connection, try testing for internet congestion and use our comprehensive guide to compare the best broadband providers.

Items booked or purchased online in Australia in 2016 by gender

Take-away food39%34%
DVDs or games41%26%
Electronic equipment35%18%
Airline tickets65%57%
Clothing, accessories or shoes54%60%
Hairdressing appointment2%7%
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