Australia’s massive spending spree through recent major sales means Australia Post will be put to the test to get gifts on people’s doorsteps in time for Christmas.
NAB transaction data shows Australians spent more than an estimated $7.1 billion across the four-day Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping event.
Ana Marinkovic, executive for small business at NAB, said the spending data “highlights the resilience of the Australian economy”.
Ahead of the sales event, market researcher McCrindle found two-in-five Australians said they would use Black Friday to kickstart their festive shopping.
The NAB data showed shoe stores came out on top, with sales up 146 per cent during the annual rush.
Camera stores came in second, followed by electronics and clothing stores.
While shoppers are always keen for a good bargain, companies did their best to drive up demand by spending millions on advertisements.
Digital marketing intelligence platform Pathmatics found the retail industry splashed out $1,227,300 on digital ads – up 60 per cent from 2021.
Myer spent the most on digital advertising, putting in a total of $317,800 toward its 2022 digital ad campaign, while Officeworks came in second with a spend of $142,500.
Australia Post gears up for challenge
With the NAB data showing Australians preferred online shopping to brick and mortar stores over the sales period, postal services are geared up to take on the challenge of delivering parcels in time for the gift-giving season.
Australia Post delivered 52 million parcels in the lead-up to last Christmas, and a spokesperson for the postal service previously told The New Daily it expected a 3 per cent increase in deliveries over the same period this year.
To help deal with the extra demand, Australia Post has announced it will once again be running its annual ‘One Team’ program, which asks everyone from top bosses to office workers to help out across retail and network operations.
Those taking part in the One Team program, which will likely include Australia Post chief executive Paul Graham and other executives, will commit to shifts throughout December sorting parcels and letters, loading and unloading vans, and helping with retail and over-the-counter service.
The recruitment drive for the One Team program came after Australia Post hired thousands of Christmas casuals and launched a weekend delivery service across all metro capitals and some regional cities and towns to handle the increased volume of parcels.
While the cut-off date for regular parcel service to international destinations for delivery in time for Christmas has passed, there is still time left to send gifts to friends and family in other countries when using express post.
Australians planning to send gifts locally have a bit more leeway, with the regular parcel post cut-off date on December 12, except for Western Australia and Northern Territory destinations, which will require parcels to be sent by December 7.
Parcels to Norfolk Island are the exception, with the regular post date for Christmas already passed, but there is still time to make the express cut-off date of December 12.