February 5, 2018

NAB Online Retail Sales Index, Quarterly Update: December 2017

In seasonally adjusted terms, at -2.2%, online retail sales contracted in December, the largest since November 2014. Looking through the month to month volatility, while the trend is still positive, it has again slowed.


In total, we estimate the Australian online retail market was worth $24.2bn in the 12 months to December 2017. 

Sales growth contracted (-2.2%) in month-on-month (mom) terms in December, seasonally adjusted (s.a.) after rapid growth in November(+4.8%mom, s.a.). This was the largest contraction in online spend since November 2014. There was a significant contraction in the largest spend share category, homewares and appliances, although media, the second largest, grew. Department stores and food led monthly growth, but given their smaller share of spend, it was insufficient to counter declines in larger spend categories.

Online sales in all states  and territories contracted in the month. Annual growth remains strongest in the large eastern states with VIC strongest (yoy).

While monthly sales growth at SME retailers also contracted in December(-1.3%), they have outpaced corporates over the year (+18.5%).

For further details, please see the attached document.