Online shopping boom

Postie Chris Hay at Australia Post's Drumcondra office. (Louisa Jones) 225686_06

By Luke Voogt

Online Christmas shopping has boomed in Geelong amid COVID-19, growing by more than a third in December 2020.

Purchases grew 38 per cent last month compared to December 2019, with Grovedale residents shopping online the most, followed closely by Torquay residents, according to Australia Post.

Mount Duneed experienced the fastest growth in online shopping in the lead up to Christmas, up 68.7 per cent on December 2019.

The two most popular types of products, fashion and apparel and variety store goods, together accounted for almost 60 per cent of Geelong’s online shopping purchases that month.

Specialty food and liquor had the fastest year-on-year growth with 58.6 per cent, while books and media purchases grew 41.7 per cent.

The boom comes as Australia Post recorded the biggest month in its 211-year history.

The organisation delivered more than 52 million parcels during December, an almost 20 per cent increase on the previous year.

While Australia Post prepared extensively for what the organisation predicted would be its busiest Christmas ever, the result still exceeded expectations, managing director Rodney Boys said.

“There is no denying that online shopping grew strongly through 2020, and this reached a new level in December as millions of people chose to buy their Christmas gifts online.

“Ongoing COVID-19 restrictions, social distancing and reduced domestic flights coupled with significantly higher parcel volumes, meant that delivering Christmas 2020 for all Australians was always going to be incredibly challenging.”

Making use of up to 20 dedicated freighters and additional cargo space on limited domestic passenger flights, Australia Post uplifted over 7400 tonnes of airfreight, up 76 per cent when compared to the same month last year, including more than 490 tonnes on the busiest night.

Luke Voogt