More than three-quarters (76%) of Australian consumers have bought something online in the past month with 56% of those transactions taking place on mobile, according to new data from Hootsuite and We Are Social.

Despite this, Australia is still lagging against the worldwide average (78.6%) in terms of e-commerce adoption, behind Indonesia (88%), the UK (87%) and the Philippines (86%).

The average overall visits to ecommerce sites has increased 17.1%, the average number of page views is up 12.3% and the average time spent per session is up 4.5%. The ecommerce conversion rate has significantly lifted by 21.6%,  

Almost two-thirds (64%) of ecommerce traffic now originating from mobile devices (up 16% year-on-year) and 33% from laptops and desktops (down 14% YoY).

When internet users were asked which features would increase their likelihood of purchasing a product, free delivery was number one (53%), followed by coupons and discounts (40%), customer reviews (34%) and easy returns (33%).

On the other end of the spectrum, only 12% said a ‘buy now’ button on social media would incentivise their purchase, while 15% said being able to click and collect their purchase and 18% said the ability to buy now and pay later.

Around the world (excluding China), almost one-quarter (24%) of internet users aged 16 to 64 named WhatsApp as their favourite social media platform, with Facebook coming in second (22%), Instagram ranking third (18%) and Twitter in fourth (5%).

Overall, ‘staying in touch with friends and family’ is the top motivation for social media use at a global level, with roughly half of all respondents saying that this is one of the primary reasons why they visit social platforms.

News and entertainment are also important drivers with more than one in three users saying that these are among their top motivations. More than one quarter of internet users aged 16 to 64 also say that they turn to social media to find inspiration for things to do or buy, while 27% say they visit social platforms specifically to find products to purchase.

Hootsuite vice president of corporate marketing, Henk Campher said the data demonstrates the digital and social media shifts over the past year throughout the world. “For advertisers there’s more work to do in reaching their audiences, with only one in 10 (10.9%) Australians saying brands’ advertising represents its audience on all channels (behind a world average of 16.4%), which is even worse when 55% of Aussies are doing brand research online before purchasing, while 38% have concerns about the use of their data and are using ad-blockers,” he said.

“Australians offer a fantastic opportunity to be engaged on their customer journey, however, brands need to work on engaging effectively and communicating authentically, especially on mobile devices, while respecting their customers’ or potential customers’ data.”