Groceries, liquor top online growth

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Food and beverages is the fastest growing online retail category over the last four years, according to new data released by Roy Morgan Research.

The latest findings from Roy Morgan Research reveals that online shopping in Australia continued its upward trajectory last year, with 7,630,000 Australians aged 14 and over (almost 40 per cent of the population) buying one or more products via the internet in an average four weeks, an increase from 2011 when 5,704,000 people made online purchases per average four weeks.

All of the top 10 online retail categories have increased in popularity since 2011, most notable was food and beverages, which includes groceries, alcohol and fast food, which saw a huge proportional increase in online shoppers.

In 2011, 568,000 Australians bought one or more products from this category in an average four weeks — a figure that almost tripled to 1,586,000 in 2014.

Reading material was another one, 2,016,000 Australians purchased something from this category in an average four weeks last year, up from 1,095,000 in 2011. The number who bought fashion online also rose (from 1,062,000 to 1,936,000 people), as did those purchasing fashion accessories (up from 210,000 to 495,000).

“Our latest data indicates that Australian consumers’ online shopping habits are evolving, with some categories gaining favour and others plateauing,” Geoffrey Smith, GM consumer products, Roy Morgan Research, said.

“Purchased by 40 per cent of the country’s internet shoppers in an average four weeks, entertainment and leisure items (shows, movie tickets, events etc) are showing no sign of being challenged for top spot as Australia’s most popular online shopping category, however, it was not the fastest growing online retail category over the last four years.

“That honour belongs to Food and Beverages, a category spanning alcohol, groceries and fast food. As we reported last year, buying alcohol online is becoming increasingly popular. Last year, 577,000 Aussie adults bought alcohol over the internet in any given four weeks — comprising more than a third of the total people who purchased anything from the food and alcohol category,” Smith said.

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