More than half of the New Zealand population (54%) aged over 18 years are now shopping online, an increase from 38 percent five years ago. The latest report from Nielsen, shows New Zealanders spent $3.7 billion in the last 12 months purchasing via the internet. The company says nearly $1 billion was spent on international websites last year.
The number of purchases being made per person has also grown significantly with 446,000 people making 11 or more transactions online in 2012, an increase of 44 percent from 2011 (310,000 people). This group now accounts for more than a quarter (27%) of online shoppers.
Tony Boyte, Associate Director of Research, Nielsen said, “New Zealanders are becoming more and more comfortable shopping online. A tipping point has been reached and many more will now follow, by the end of the year we expect to see two million New Zealanders shopping online and spend to rise to $4 billion.”
The most popular products and services are airline tickets with 47 percent of online shoppers purchasing from this category, followed by clothing/shoes/accessories (38%), books/magazines (32%), entertainment tickets (29%) and travel related services such as accommodation and car hire (28%).
Nielsen’s Online Retail Report identifies a combination of reasons consumers are shopping online. Shopping online is primarily driven by consumers finding better prices and deals and the ability to compare products and brands. Its convenience and time saving are also major drivers.
The convenience is magnified by the use of mobile devices (smartphones and tablets) for shopping online. Consumers are predominantly using these devices for research but a number of consumers are now actively using them to make an online purchase.
Over a quarter (26%) of online shopping spend is taking place on international websites. The choice of products and perceived price savings are the main contributors to this.
Boyte adds, “Purchasing offshore continues to rise and highlights the concerns of New Zealand retailers about how they can effectively compete with sales to international websites.”