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E-commerce

Online shopping costs Aussie businesses $31 billion per year

Around nine million Australians say they shop or browse online during work hours, according to the latest survey from comparison site Finder.com.au.

Nearly half – 47 per cent – of the 2,085 people surveyed admitted to shopping while on the clock, costing Aussies businesses lost productivity equating to $603 million in wages every single week or $31.1 billion annually – up from $23.8 billion in 2017.

“Many Aussies spend a large part of their work day in front of a computer so it can be easy to deviate from their tasks, especially when you consider newsletters and targeted marketing,” said Bessie Hassan, money expert at Finder.

“But on the flip side, it’s not uncommon to hear of some employees checking their emails at home, or answering a work phone call. Still, if you do feel like an online browse, do it within your break.”

The proportion of Aussies happy to jump online for leisure during work hours is up from 36 per cent in 2017, to 47 per cent this year – an increase in 2.5 million people.

The research also shows that over one third (39 per cent) of Aussies spend up to two hours each week indulging in some online retail therapy.

“Browsing online during work hours eats into the time you have to actually complete your tasks for the day, meaning you might have to stay back later to finish it off. Really, the quicker you can complete your work, the sooner you can go home,” said Hassan.

Female employees are less likely to dip into work hours for online shopping than men, with 36 per cent stating they don’t browse or shop online when at work in comparison to 30 per cent of men.

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