One in two department store customers also shop online, the latest Roy Morgan research shows.

The study indicates that David Jones and Myer customers are more likely to go internet shopping than those who shop at Target, Kmart or Big W.

More than half (53 per cent) of Australians 14+ who shopped at David Jones in the last four weeks also bought something online in that same period, up from 39 per cent in early 2011. Similarly, 47 per cent of Myer customers also shop online, up from 37 per cent.

Around two in five discount store customers shopped online, a comparable proportion to this time last year.

“Customers at Myer and David Jones are clearly comfortable also shopping online, whether it’s for products and brands unavailable at the department store or for the same goods at better prices,” said Norman Morris, industry communications director, Roy Morgan Research.

“This could be seen by the department stores as either an opportunity to pitch their own emerging online stores to these web-savvy customers, or a risk through lost in-store sales opportunities.

“Whether people buy online or not has a lot to do with where they sit on the Technology Adoption Curve: early adopters are much more likely to buy online than those at the ‘lagged’ end.

“It is clear that department store shoppers are increasingly willing to at least try purchasing something online. The strong dollar is attractive for those willing to risk buying from overseas, and with some local online retailers offer free delivery and returns, buying online is less risky than ever before.”