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Retail ecommerce sales in Australia will rise 14.4% this year to pass $10 billion, according to eMarketer’s latest estimates of retail sales, online and offline, around the globe. In 2014, ecommerce sales in the country increased 17.3% to account for over 4% of total retail sales, and that share will expand to 4.5% in 2015. Low double-digit gains will continue through 2017, and by the end of our forecast period, retail ecommerce sales will total $14.52 billion and represent 5.6% of retail sales in the country.
Australia falls in the middle of the pack in both absolute terms and percentage of total retail ecommerce sales when compared with the other Asia-Pacific countries for which we produce estimates, behind China, Japan and South Korea and ahead of India and Indonesia.
Interestingly, digital buyer penetration among internet users in Australia is the second highest in Asia-Pacific. eMarketer estimates that 79.4% of internet users in the country will purchase via any digital channel this year, behind only Japan (82.0% penetration). Due to its size, though, Australia has the smallest digital buyer population in Asia-Pacific, at 12.1 million.
Australia’s ecommerce landscape is crowded with international competitors—especially eBay-owned properties—according to October 2014 data from Experian Hitwise Australia. eBay Australia catalogued the highest number of visits, 23.1 million, during the week examined, accounting for 12.9% of retail site visits during that timeframe. The local edition of eBay-owned classifieds site Gumtree was second with 13.3 million visits and a 7.4% share, followed by eBay with 13.2 million for a 7.4% share, and Amazon with 11.6 million for a 6.5% share. [Note: The Australian version of Amazon’s site, Amazon.com.au, sells only ebooks.]
The remaining top 10 ecommerce sites, with visitor shares of around 1% or less, included user-supported deals-posting site OzBargain, consumer electronics retailer JB Hi-Fi Australia and hardware chain Bunnings Warehouse, Apple’s site, Alibaba Group-owned discounts site AliExpress and department store chain Target Australia.
The list reflects a landscape dominated by consumer-to-consumer resale sites, alongside options for business-to-consumer transactions.
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