More Australians are using online marketplaces to buy and sell goods, according to a new retail report released by the CBA.
The recent Commonwealth Bank Retail Retail Insights [PDF] report found 97 per cent of digital shoppers are using online marketplaces and more than two out of five online purchases go through a marketplace.
Online marketplaces in Australia include eBay, Gumtree, Alibaba and even Uber Eats and Deliveroo are considered marketplaces.
While eBay has been around since 1999, the report noted usage among both consumers and retailers has accelerated in recent years.
And with the range of marketplaces steadily growing, the choices for consumers, and channels for retailers, continue to evolve.
Ebay is still dominant in Australia with 70 per cent of those surveyed using it frequently compared to 31 per cent on Gumtree and 28 per cent on Amazon.
Jerry Macey, national manager, retail industry, business and private banking, CBA said, “The trend is clear. Consumers are engaging with online marketplaces en masse and retailers expect consumer spending to grow further through this channel.
“However, uncertainty about the impact among many retailers may lead them to prioritise more traditional channels.”
The use of online marketplaces is changing shopper behaviour, 29 per cent of consumers say they have purchased less in retailers’ stores over the past year as a result of using online marketplaces.
According to CBA, there hasn’t been any net impact on purchases from retailers’ websites. However, given prolific usage, this is likely to change.
A growing number of retailers are following the lead of their customers. Half of Australia’s retailers now sell products through online marketplaces which account for 38 per cent of sales volume.
However, the report suggests those who are using marketplaces, 50 per cent who have introduced the channel to their consumers in the past two years have not fully grasped the concept.
Almost one in three retailers are unsure of the impact that online marketplaces will have on the industry and more than one-third are uncertain of how online marketplaces will affect profit margins.
When asked why consumers like using marketplaces, 79 per cent said there was some value to them and 74 per cent said they had a good product range. Other factors included a easy website navigation (59 per cent), products consumers can’t get anywhere else (56 per cent) and discounts (55 per cent).