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Online shopping statistics 2021

The average Aussie spends $228 online per week.

From new outfits to new dishwashers, Australians have come to love the convenience of shopping online. Big shopping days like Black Friday are becoming more popular every year, and for some the opportunity to score a sweet deal is too good to refuse.

Ecommerce spending has exploded since the COVID-19 pandemic struck in 2020, and is now the norm. As technology develops and retail giants develop more innovative ways of delivering to customers, the mighty reign of the digital store will only continue to grow.

How many Australians are shopping online?

Excluding groceries, 3 in 4 Australians (75%) shop online.

The average Aussie spends 4.4 hours each week browsing the sales. Before you jump to any gender stereotypes, it's men (4.8 hours) who are spending more time online shopping than women (4.1 hours).

However, young Aussies take the cake for the most time spent scrolling the online shops. Both gen Z and millennials (also known as gen Y) spend 5.6 hours each week online shopping, which is bound to put a dent in one's wallet. On the flip side, baby boomers spend a modest 2.5 hours online shopping per week.

How much is the average person spending online?

The average person spends $228 on online purchases each week. Again, it's men who are the big spenders, forking out $288 each compared to $170 for women.

Gen Y are spending the most of any generation ($308), while baby boomers are spending the least ($54).

Those from New South Wales are splurging on the sales more than any other state, with a weekly average spend of $257. On the other hand, Western Australians are more cautious with their money, spending $164 each.

How much money do Australians spend online?

Australians spent a total of $4.2 billion online in August 2021 according to Finder analysis of ABS data. This represents a 36% increase over the previous year and an incredible 114% increase over the same period in 2019. Online shopping was already on a steady incline, and the pandemic has only fast-tracked this growth.

What portion of retail spending is online?

In August 2021, online sales made up 15% of all retail spending. This is an enormous jump from just 7.1% in March 2020 prior to the pandemic.

How much are people spending globally?

In 2020, more than 2 billion people shopped online worldwide, and total online retail sales surpassed US$4.2 trillion – that's a lot of deliveries to track.

According to Statista, global retail ecommerce sales are projected to reach $6.4 billion by 2024 – that's a 49% increase in just 4 years.

What are the top online stores?

A global survey in 2020 found Amazon is the top online platform for product discovery. Nearly 2 in 3 (63%) online shoppers use Amazon to start searching for products, which isn't surprising given the company claims to sell virtually everything.

Close to half (48%) of consumers say they use search engines to search for products, while 33% go directly to the retailer site.

What don't Australians like about online shopping?

Patience is not something Aussies have much of when it comes to retail therapy. More than half (51%) of our survey respondents say long delivery wait times are one of their biggest pet peeves. High shipping costs came in a close second, with 50% of respondents admitting this irritates them.

The data reveals shoppers also crave convenience. Having a package sent to the post office while they were home is a top pet peeve for 44% of Aussies.

Young shoppers have the highest expectations of their online experience. The overwhelming majority of gen Z (92%) admit to having an online shopping pet peeve, compared to 63% of baby boomers.

How many people shop through social media?

Shopping directly from social media feeds is becoming increasingly common. In 2020, 5.3 million Australians shopped through social media – equivalent to 27% of Aussie adults. By 2024, this number is forecast to grow 21% to reach 6.4 million.

A 2019 PayPal study found Facebook is the most popular ecommerce social site, with 83% of social media shoppers using this platform. This is followed by Instagram (35%), Snapchat (12%) and Pinterest (12%).

How to shop smart and save money

Shop the sales. If you're a savvy shopper, you'll know you don't need to pay for anything full price. In the lead-up to big sale days like Black Friday and Cyber Monday, subscribe to your favourite brands and browse their social media accounts to make sure you're not missing out on any deals. Waiting until big sale days means saving money on purchases, but it also gives you more time to think about what you really need – and what you don't.

Fill up your cart… and wait. Sometimes playing hard to get really works. Load up your shopping cart and leave it idle for a day or two. Often brands will email to remind you of your pending items, and sometimes this comes with a discount code. This is a great way to save on your shop – just make sure you unsubscribe from retailers' newsletters to avoid an overloaded inbox.

Don't pay for shipping. Most brands offer free shipping above a certain spend, but don't stock up on things you don't need just to meet the threshold. Instead, keep an eye out for free shipping promo codes for your favourite brands. But it doesn't stop there: before you click "buy", look out for any shopping deals – like hefty discounts – online.

Check out the rest of our online shopping hacks to spare your wallet at checkout.

More guides on Finder

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