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NZ Online Shopping Explosion

by Dennis Wood January 21, 2019 3 min read

There is no question, buying online is a growing trend and NZ online shopping is set to follow world trends. In 2006, 37% of New Zealanders shopped online. By 2016, this trend was up to 66% and growing fast. It is expected to reach 83% by 2026 (Boyte, T., 2018).

Online shopping in New Zealand is now worth $4.2 billion annually, (as at 30 April 2018) up from $3.9b the same time a year earlier. In a recent survey, website ‘PriceSpy’ found that 25% of Kiwis prefer to shop on the web.

Generation "X" Biggest spenders

Research shows that Generation X make 20% more online purchases than their younger counterparts.

“The phenomenon ofonline shopping is one propelled by Generation X consumers (born 1966-1981). This is contrary to the popular belief that it is the tech-savvy Millennial (born 1982-2001) who is driving such strident ecommerce growth”. (ecommercefoundation, 2018)

It is predicted that by 2021, global ecommerce sales are estimated to rise to a gargantuan $4.5 trillion. The ecommerce spend per capita is highest in the United Kingdom at $4,201 per person per annum, with the United States coming in second at $3,428 per person. (Frisby, J., 2018).


If you compare online spending by country as a percentage of income, the Chinese lead the way at 19.34% of their salary spent online, with Mexico second at 17.31%. The United States are seventh at 7.63%.


What makes buying online easy

There are some well researched facts that show online shoppers prefer the online experience in order to;

1. Research products

  • For better selection

  • For price comparison

2. Make a saving in time

3. Avoid traffic and less crowds

4. Ensure the shopping experience was faster and less stressful

5. More detailed and better information was available online to obtain;

  • Specifications of the product - such as size, weight, colour choices

  • Information on the features of the product

  • Operating or assembly manuals

  • Customer reviews - this gives potential customers confidence in buying a product which others have commented on and reviewed before they purchase.

Frenelle Jewellery: Online Shopping Experience


Note: Click for SSL certificate explanation

"Shady" Online Shopping Websites

If there is any doubt about using an online website try looking at the reference chart above and take particular note of the following:

  • Does the website has an SSL certificate for security of your credit card details? The easiest way to ascertain this, is either viewing the URL to see if there is an ‘s’ after the 'http' or looking for the SSL icon in the shopping cart.

  • Consider how liberal and broad ranging the return/refund policy is. Can you return goods if dissatisfied with the product, or if you change your mind.

  • Look at the owner’s previous business experience. You should be able to judge the owner’s business experience through their ‘about us’ page. Are they open about who they are? Are the owners or employee's names mentioned? Do they have good contact details available?

  • Are you able to send any queries you have to the business owner through the ‘contact us’ page.

It's always a good idea to check for testimonials and product/service reviews. These can be checked a number of ways such as;

  • Google Reviews - check what other customers have said publicly about the business and products.

  • Facebook reviews

  • Trademe feedback - if they have a Trademe store.

  • Looking at the business website for customer reviews and testimonials

  • Looking at the website ‘about us’ page for background information you can independently verify

Does the company clearly show their Terms and Conditions on the website?

You could complete a company search on the business name and/or a search on the director(s)

Do a Google Search on the business and/or director for any adverse comments. These days, a simple google search will throw up plenty of detail about most businesses and their owners.

Look for social proof on Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest.

Make contact with someone who has dealt with the business

Check customer feedback on Facebook and Instagram

This article was written by Dennis Wood – a former Police Officer and Insolvency Investigator Email: dennis@frenelle.co.nz