Australians Increasingly Turning To Online Shopping And Wishlists
Online shopping and its growing popularity in Australia is a way for an increasing number of Australians to cash in on the strength of the local currency, whilst also helping contain both inflation and interest rates.
The ability of Australian consumers to safely source and procure cheaper goods internationally has broken the tyranny of distance that has saddled consumers with opaque pricing and higher costs.
Brick and mortar retailers have found that in recent months Australian consumers were increasingly switching to online retailers where they were finding their dollars stretched a lot further.
Whilst reliable data is hard to find, the Reserve Bank of Australia estimates that online shopping accounts for approximately 3 per cent of the A$700 billion in domestic consumption, and is growing rapidly.
A recent survey conducted by the central bank found that 80 per cent of those polled had made purchases online, and that the total value of purchases made internationally has been growing by 15 per cent a year since 2005.
The temptation to buy from overseas is certainly understandable with the cost of books and DVD’s routinely between 30 to 70 per cent cheaper internationally, even after taking account of shipping costs.
The current Amazon.uk top selling book, for instance costs just A$6.20 at current exchange rates. In Australia however, the very same item retails for A$23 online from one of the biggest book chains.
Scenting the potential, the UK arm of Amazon recently stopped charging postage on the 11,000-mile trip to Australia and New Zealand on all orders worth 25 pounds ($41) or more.
Obviously feeling threatened, billionaire retailer Gerry Harvey joined a campaign pushing for the closure of a loophole which allows Australians to purchase up to A$1,000 of goods online without having to pay the standard 10 percent goods tax.
That move resulted in a deluge of criticisms from angry consumers who derided Australian retailers, with such vitriol that Mr. Harvey was forced to withdraw from the campaign saying his involvement had been “suicidal”.
One newspaper poll on the controversy drew 35,500 replies with 99 percent favouring online shopping.
If you are love online shopping why not setup an online wishlist, on a tool like boxedup.com. It’s free and you can share your heart’s desire with friends and family and ensure you never again receive the same gift twice.