Australian shoppers love their online bargains, with three quarters (76 per cent) of Australian online shoppers admitting to discounted prices being the reason for impulsive shopping, according to Mastercard’s latest survey on online shopping habits.
The Insights Report Economic Crisis and Preference for Online Shopping in Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa found that CDs, DVDs, VCDs and toys and gifts were the most likely products to attract Australian shoppers with 40 per cent impulsively purchasing CDs, DVDs and VCDs and more than a third (35 per cent) choosing toys and gifts. 
The survey found that shopping online continues to grow in popularity across Australia with almost two-thirds (66 per cent) of respondents stating that they used the internet for online shopping. Online shopping made up an average of 30 per cent of their overall shopping. The top three items that Australian shoppers bought online included CDs, DVDs and VCDs (44 per cent), airline tickets (41 per cent) and toys and gifts (39 per cent).
The survey also revealed that despite the economic downturn affecting many markets, online shoppers in Australia shopped more frequently online in 4Q 2008 than in the prior year. Online shoppers in Australia made an average of 3.8 purchases in 4Q 2008 compared to 3.5 purchases during the same quarter in 2007.  
Not only have they shopped more frequently despite the economic climate, but Australian online shoppers have shown an increased intention for future online shopping compared to a year ago.
“Online shopping is growing in popularity as consumers recognise and appreciate the convenience and ease of shopping online,” said Andrew Cartwright, country manager Australia, MasterCard Worldwide.
“As businesses look to grow their online retail presence, they need to be aware of the preferences and concerns that drive online shoppers."
Across the region, books and arts (with 38 per cent of online shoppers choosing this) emerged as the most frequently bought items online, closely followed by home appliances and electronic products (37 per cent) and CDs, DVDs and VCDs (36 per cent). 
The majority of the online shopping conducted in the region was planned, with 83 per cent of online shoppers admitting that they tend to plan their shopping in advance and conduct research on their planned purchases.
Most online shoppers either bought items impulsively “hardly ever” (36 per cent) or “just a couple of times” (38 per cent). The top reason for impulsive buying was the discounted prices (67 per cent) that online channels afford. 
This is the second survey on online shopping habits conducted by MasterCard. It covered 5037 respondents across 10 markets: Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, UAE and South Africa.