Online Retail Sales Index monthly update – February 2014

Recent improved momentum in online sales stall in February – with trends weaker for most categories – strength remains in Groceries & Liquor, but Personal & Recreational Goods and Daily Deals contract. Online spending up to $15 billion in the past year.

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Recent improved momentum in online sales stall in February – with trends weaker for most categories – strength remains in Groceries & Liquor, but Personal & Recreational Goods and Daily Deals contract. Online spending up to $15 billion in the past year.

  • In the year to February 2014, Australians spent $15 billion on online retail. This level is equivalent to 6.5% of spending with traditional bricks & mortar retailers (excluding cafés, restaurants and takeaway food to create a like-for-like comparison) in the year to January.
  • The NAB Online Retail Sales Index fell modestly in February – to a seasonally adjusted 239 points (from 242 points in January).
  • Online retail sales were virtually flat in February. In seasonally adjusted three month moving average terms online sales expanded 0.1% (from a 1.1% increase in January). The flat result for February comes after the relatively strong November to January period.
  • Sales growth for traditional bricks & mortar retail has improved in recent months, maintaining momentum of about +0.7%, in January (seasonally adjusted, 3 month moving average basis).
  • The slowing growth trend for online retail sales reflects almost uniform slowing in conditions at the category level. In year-on-year terms, the online index grew 8%, a slowdown on the January result (+11.4%). At 9%(YoY), Department & Variety Store growth slowed to below 10 % for the first time. Media (+11%) has continued to trend downward. Groceries & Liquor was particularly strong (+19%). Two categories to go into reverse were Daily Deals (-3%) and Personal & Recreational Goods (-10%) continuing recent weakness for these.

For further analysis download the full report.