Online shopping continues to grow

Online shopping is up 13 per cent on the same period last year as New Zealanders spending habits increasingly shift to internet-based browsing and purchasing, according to new research.

The BNZ Online Retail Sales Index found that growth in online retail purchases was more than three times that of traditional bricks and mortar stores in the final quarter of 2013.

Traditional retail sales in the December quarter were up by 3.7 per cent on the same quarter a year earlier.

Over the past year, kiwi consumers dropped $2.8 billion on internet purchases, which equates to just over six per cent of total retail spending.

Purchasing groceries and alcohol online now account for 13 per cent of online sales, whilst recreational goods, books and entertainment media make up 17 per cent.

The index also found the puff has gone out of daily deal or one day sales websites. Following exceptional growth over 2010 and 2011, the daily sales sector has continued to contract to now account for just 6 per cent of New Zealand's online purchases.

New Zealand-based online retailers are still the most popular for consumers, taking in about 60 per cent of the online spend, but international online retailers are closing in says the BNZ's Gary Baker.

"Online purchases from merchants overseas continue to power on at a faster rate, with annual growth continuing to run at over 20 per cent."

"Consequently, the online market share of overseas merchants has increased to 42 per cent in the month of January," said the BNZ director of Institutional research, Gary Baker.

- By Daniel Lynch of the New Zealand Herald

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