Australian online payment preferences

Discover the local payment methods Australians use to shop online and in store

Countries Australia

Intro Australia

Australians pay for 48% with credit or debit cards for online transactions [1]. They pay for 26% with a wallet, 9% by bank transfer, 1% with cash, and 16% by a variety of other means [1]. Visa dominates the card market, with a 49% market share. Mastercard has 26% and American Express 6%. Local card schemes have a 19% market share [1].

Australia is an affluent market with high levels of Internet penetration and financial inclusion. By the middle of 2021, the outlook for recovery from the COVID pandemic was looking good. As with other countries, whether the bounce-back continues depends very much on how well the vaccine works against new variants. But signs are hopeful. And there is every prospect that the country’s e-commerce sector will continue to boom for the foreseeable future.

After dipping in 2021, retail sales value rose consistently during the first half of 2022 [2]. However, much of this rise can be attributed to rising prices, rather than increased sales volumes [3]. And there were clear signs of a possible slowdown, with volumes rising just 0.2% in the latest monthly figures [3].

The IMF expects the Australian economy to grow by 4.7% in 2022, falling to 4.2% in 2023 [4]. Inflation in 2022 is 3.9% [4]. The IMF predicts this will fall to 2.7% in 2023 [4]. Unemployment has been 4% or slightly lower for some time [5]. By the middle of 2022, inflation had hit 6.1%, a 21-year high [5].

The Australian e-commerce market

The average Australian online shopper spends $1,724 a year with online merchants [1]. The national e-commerce market is worth $44 billion and is growing at a rate of 14.2% a year [1]. The most popular purchase categories are food & personal care (26%), fashion (25%) and toys, hobby & DIY (19%) [1].

During lockdown, e-commerce in Australia — at least according to early reports — grew by 55% [6]. More than 5.6 million Australian households shopped online, a 21% rise compared to before the pandemic struck [6]. And 66% of Australians were still shopping online for non-essential items, even as lockdown came to an end [7].

43% of all Australian e-commerce transactions are completed on a mobile device [1]. 63% of Australians have shopped online with cross-border merchants [1]. Their commerce is worth around US$10.7 billion a year [1].

Local market conditions in Australia

Australia is 18th in the World Bank’s Global Logistical Performance Index. According to a report released at the end of 2020, the Australian parcel market is expected to grow by 5.46% a year between now and 2024, hitting a billion parcels in 2021 and continuing to growth thereafter [8].

In 2020, Australia Post — the national carrier — won the 2020 Parcel and Postal Technology Awards. It was singled out for its use of technology to deliver a pick-up-and-drop (PUDO) network. Using an app, customers can choose from a range of pick-up locations for their e-commerce purchases [9].

89% of Australians have fixed-line broadband access [1]. Almost all adult Australians have a bank account and 59% have a credit card [1].

Footnotes:

  1. https://www.imf.org/en/Countries/AUS
  2. https://www.reuters.com/world/asia-pacific/australia-gdp-climbs-18-q1-back-pre-pandemic-time-2021-06-02
  3. https://ihsmarkit.com/research-analysis/australian-economy-rebounds-in-early-2021-Apr21.html
  4. https://covid19.who.int/region/wpro/country/au
  5. https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/70/wr/mm7018e1.htm
  6. https://insideretail.com.au/business/covid-to-drive-ongoing-double-digit-e-commerce-growth-in-australia-202102
  7. https://www.essenceglobal.com/article/new-ecommerce-habits-that-will-stick-beyond-covid-19
  8. https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2020/12/07/2140299/0/en/Australia-Courier-Express-and-Parcel-CEP-Market-Growth-Trends-and-Forecast-2020-2025.html
  9. https://apgecommerce.com/?p=4453

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Quick facts

The Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated Australia’s move towards e-commerce. Online retail is expected to grow by 10.3% CAGR to 2024 with sales expected to reach 59.4 billion USD.

72% of Australians prefer shopping instore than online. However, 33% will continue to shop online after the pandemic is over and 74% would like businesses to maintain the flexibility, they’ve shown over shopping channels.

Australia’s economy dropped by 2.4% in 2020 but is forecast to grow by 4.5% in 2021 and 2.8% in 2022 according to the IMF. Inflation also rose in 2020 by 0.9% and is expected to rise by 1.7% in 2021 and by 1.6% in 2022.

General Information

  • Population 25.8 m
  • Population 15 + 20.8 m
  • Online population 23.0 m
  • Area 7,692,024 km2
  • Currency AUD
  • GDP 1,610.6 bn $US
  • GDP per capita 62,449 $US

Payment types

  • Card-based payments
  • Cash-based payments
  • Bank transfer
  • Wallets
  • Other
[{"label":"Card-based payments","value":"48"},{"label":"Cash-based payments","value":"1"},{"label":"Bank transfer","value":"9"},{"label":"Wallets","value":"26"},{"label":"Other","value":"16"}]

Banked population
  • Australia 100%
  • Asia Pacific 76%
  • World 67%
Credit card penetration
  • Australia 59%
  • Asia Pacific 29%
  • World 19%
Internet penetration
  • Australia 89%
  • Asia Pacific 61%
  • World 62%
Smartphone penetration
  • Australia 80%
  • Asia Pacific 62%
  • World 70%

The E-Commerce Market

Top e-commerce segments

  1. Food& Personal Care: 26%
  2. Fashion: 25%
  3. Toys, Hobby & DIY: 19%
  4. Electronics & Media: 18%
  5. Furniture & Appliances: 12%

Cross-border e-commerce

  1. Cross-border proportion of total e-commerce – 24%
  2. Value of cross-border e-commerce – 10.7 bn $US
  3. Online shoppers who have shopped cross-border – 63%

Top 3 cross-border shopping origin markets

  1. China: 32%
  2. US: 26%
  3. UK: 13%
B2C e-commerce growth 20->21
  • Australia 14.2%
E-commerce % of total retail
  • Australia 15%
  • Asia Pacific 29%
  • World 20%
E-commerce completed on a mobile device
  • Australia 43%
  • Asia Pacific 65%
  • World 53%

E-Commerce Trends

  • E-commerce market size 44.4 bn $US
  • E-commerce spending per capita 1,724 $US
  • E-commerce spending as % of GDP 3.0%

The Credit Card Split

  • Visa
  • Mastercard
  • American Express
  • Local Schemes
[{"label":"Visa","value":"49"},{"label":"Mastercard","value":"26"},{"label":"American Express","value":"6"},{"label":"Local Schemes","value":"19"}]

The information on our Insights pages has been compiled by us in cooperation with Datamatics and Wright & Brown. The data shown is partially owned by us and partially owned by GlobalData. © 2021 by PPRO Financial Ltd. No data and information can be used for any further publication without the explicit approval of PPRO.

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