3 May 2013

Online sales growth lower

9:05 am on 3 May 2013

The pace of online retail sales growth in Australia slowed in March, probably due to a lack of new versions of tablet devices being launched.

National Australia Bank said online retail sales grew by 15% in the 12 months to March, well down from 19% in February and a recent peak of 27% in January.

"The slowing growth rate in March may have been influenced by the lack of product launches in the electronics space," a report by the NAB.

"Online sales were boosted in both March 2011 and March 2012 by flagship tablet releases, which did not occur this year.

"When these effects are removed from our data, growth rates remained at similar levels to those recorded in February."

AAP reports Australians spent about $A13.3 billion on online retail purchases in the year to March, equal to about about 6% of traditional retail sales by stores.