Debit card customers 'spent $9.5bn online in 2010'

Despite widespread reports that consumers in Australia are increasingly cautious with their money, new figures indicate that in 2010 debit cards and other payment methods were used to purchase $9.5 billion worth of goods and services online.

The data from the Commonwealth Bank of Australia's (CBA's) Global Markets Research analysts revealed that this accounts for 3.8 per cent of the total retail spending in the country, reports the Sydney Morning Herald.

According to the study of the spending habits of credit and debit card customers, fashion sites demonstrated the greatest increases in sales growth, while consumers under the age of 21 spent the most online.

However, of the $9.5 billion spent on the internet, only $5.3 billion went to domestic retailers as many Aussies opted to purchase goods from overseas.

CBA analyst Andrew McLennan commented: "There remains plenty of growth potential online with 59 per cent of online consumers using the medium just once in the past year for an online retail purchase."

Earlier this week, figures from PwC and Frost & Sullivan revealed that this year the amount spent by online shoppers in Australia is expected to top the $13 billion mark.

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