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How e-commerce has buffered Australian businesses from Covid-19

E-commerce has made a large difference in Covid-19’s impact on Australian businesses, according to Deloitte Access Economics.

The research, produced in partnership with Australia Post, found that non-store revenue from additional online activity has increased between $105,000 and $708,000 for the average small business.

And, Australian businesses that invested in e-commerce have seen more positive impact than those that didn’t.

“Australians are embracing home delivery in record numbers and this analysis shows that over the next 12 months home delivery is expected to remain 25 per cent higher than pre-Covid levels,” said Christine Holgate, MD and CEO at Australia Post.

“That is a significant challenge for us as the engine room of Australian e-commerce, but one we are preparing for.”

By using e-commerce, 73 per cent of businesses are able to retain employees while 61 per cent of businesses remain in operation. From March to August, non-store revenue of small businesses and businesses with up to 19 employees increased by 17 per cent and 23 per cent respectively.

“By focusing on the opportunities of e-commerce, businesses say they have been able to protect not only their bottom line, but the livelihoods of millions of Australians who rely on our business sector for employment,” said Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts Paul Fletcher.

The findings come ahead of the upcoming Christmas peak season, which is expected to generate $4 billion in spending – 25 per cent more than last year.

“Covid-19 has changed the way Australians shop with an estimated 45 per cent of purchases set to be completed online in the future,” said John O’Mahony, Deloitte Access Economics partner.

“Businesses looking to set themselves up for long-term success should look to increase digitisation, improve their supply chain resilience, and redesign their business strategy.”

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