New Zealanders have well and truly embraced internet shopping. There are now 1.9 million New Zealanders shopping online, 56 percent of the total population, according to new research.
The study, from Nielsen, indicates that the number of people shopping online increased by over 100,000, growth of six percent in the last year.
At the same time, the number of purchases made by each person is buying is increasing at a rapid rate. Nearly half a million Kiwis each made 11 or more purchases on the internet last year, an increase of 58 percent in the last two years. This is reflected in spend with $3.8 billion spend online in 2013 and an expected increase to $4.15 billion this year.
The most popular products and services are airline tickets with 44 percent of online shoppers purchasing from this category, followed by clothing/ shoes/ accessories (40%), books/magazines (35%), entertainment tickets (26%) and travel related services such as accommodation and car hire (25%). While all of these categories have traditionally been strong for online shopping, we are seeing great growth in the number of people purchasing clothing/ shoes/ accessories, books/ magazines, plus smaller categories such as computer equipment, baby supplies, furniture, consumer electronics and groceries.
These would be great categories for businesses looking to enter the online shopping space in the next year to eighteen months.
$1.3 billion is spent by New Zealanders on websites based overseas, with USA, Australia and the UK the most popular. 34 percent of the total amount Kiwis spent shopping online is spent overseas, an increase from 26 percent the previous year and double that of 2010.
However, while Kiwis shopping offshore increases competition for New Zealand retailers, the web also opens up even larger opportunities for New Zealand businesses by allowing them to sell to consumers on a global scale.
Consumers shop online for convenience, which includes being able to compare products and prices. It’s a trend that will continue to grow and with this, spend will increase substantially. A considerable proportion of spend will continue to go off-shore but the opportunity remains for New Zealand retailers to take advantage of the market’s growth.