Australian shoppers have changed their spending habits to explore more online options. As a result of the pandemic and associated restrictions, the way people are shopping has shifted with only 46% spending the same as what they were before COVID-19, according to a new GetApp survey of 1,000 local consumers.

By contrast, more than one-quarter (28%) are now spending less and only 26% are spending more when compared to pre-COVID-19. Further, more than half (53%) are spending more online and less in-store with only 4% spending more in-store and less online.

While Australians have been in lockdown, there has also been an increase in the number of hours people are spending shopping online.

Pre-COVID, 22% of shoppers spent three to five hours online and post-COVID, this has increased to 33%. This has seen the percentage of shoppers who spend one to two hours online decrease from 64% pre-COVID to 45% post-COVID.

The shift to online shopping is expected to continue in the lead up to Christmas with 40% of shoppers suggesting that they will explore online channels.

However, while one-third (33%) see online shopping as a good thing due to convenience, 34% see shopping in-store as a big part of getting into the Christmas spirit.

When consumers shop online, almost one-third (31%) use online marketplaces such as eBay and Etsy, while 23% opt to shop directly from a retailer or brand and 18% said they shop on Amazon. Although 40% of respondents said they have purchased from one or two new online stores, 38% said they have stuck with the shops they know.