More than eight in 10 (82%) or 9.4 million Australian households shopped online in 2022, spending $63.8 billion, which accounted for over 18% of all retail sales, according to a new report from Australia Post.

The 2023 Inside Australian Online Shopping Report has shown that Australians spent the most on home and garden ($18.7 billion), a category incorporating furniture and electronic goods. However, overall growth was driven by increased spend on food and liquor stores (11.4% year-over-year growth), as well as variety stores (8.6% year-over-year growth).

Across the country, Queenslanders got more comfy shopping online with the strongest year-over-year growth than any other state (11.1%), followed closely by West Australians (11%). Australians in remote and regional Australia continued to embrace the online shopping trend, while, New South Wales, Victoria and the ACT came out of lockdown ready to spend big in store.

Australia Post executive general manager of parcel, post and ecommerce services, Gary Starr said that while ecommerce had moderated with the opening of stores, the shift in the way we work, live and shop is here to stay.

“Australians’ love affair with online shopping has not waned, even with restrictions removed. One million more households are now shopping online compared to 2019, and 5.6 million households made an online purchase every month during the past year,” he said.

“Australians are shopping online more often, with 37% shopping fortnightly compared to 20% pre-Covid. The growth trend in online was steady prior to Covid but spiked during restrictions, now it’s showing a return to normal trend growth. By 2033, we expect around one in three retail dollars will be spent online.”

MST Marquee lead analyst, Craig Woolford said the online environment makes it easy to cross shop and compare to find the best price which can reduce customer loyalty.

“What good online retailers are doing is trying to entice their customers to stay with their platform. That could be via a subscription or other forms of rewards and points to create loyalty, consistency and in return repeat purchases,” he said.