Aussies ditch the kitchen for the convenience of online take-away; food apps make fast delivery cravings too hard to resist

19 September 2017: The proportion of Australians ordering take-away food online has surged, rising from 36% to 47% among those who made internet purchases last year, as the convenience of ordering meals on their smartphone drives people away from the kitchen, according to the 2017 Sensis eBusiness Report.  

Sensis Digital Manager, Alice Mentiplay said: “Only a few years ago ordering take-away food meant flicking through a bunch of old menus, phoning through an order to a noisy restaurant, then sitting in hope that the food would eventually turn up and you’d get what you asked for. Intense competition has changed the industry and people can now order their meal in a couple of touches on their smartphone and track its delivery right to their door.  

“We all know that it can be exhausting cooking after a long day at work, or a big night out with family or friends. The growth in food apps such as UberEats is driving more people to ditch cooking for the convenience of take-away delivered to the dinner table or couch.   

“Office workers and commuters are even jumping the queue when ordering their morning coffee or lunch on the run, with apps like Skip saving precious time as people’s tolerance for waiting has hit rock bottom,” she said.   

Driving the change is the rise in smartphone ownership (up from 78% to 82%), with the smartphone overtaking the computer as the most common device to access the internet for the first time this year (79% vs 71%).  

The 2017 study from digital expert Sensis surveyed 800 Australian consumers and 1,002 small and medium businesses about their online experiences and found that women are the shopaholics online, with 60% making internet purchases versus only 51% of men over the past year.   

Conversely men spend more than women ($3,450 versus $2,900) with gender stereotypes playing out in what they are purchasing.¹ The survey did find that both men and women were more frugal online this year, with the average spend down from $3,300 to $3,150.  

“Purchasing behaviours might be changing but stereotypes appear here to stay. Men were almost twice as likely to buy electronic equipment online, while women were more than twice as likely to order cosmetics and also lead in purchasing clothing, shoes, and doing the grocery shopping,” said Mrs Mentiplay.   

Fears about hacking continue to grow, with 89% of Australians now worried about the theft of their private information online (up from 85%), while 86% are worried about the security of their credit card details.  

“Fewer people made purchases online this year, with the percentage dropping from 71% to 56%. While we can partly attribute this result to the weak retail environment, as noted in the recent NAB Online Retail Sales Index*, consumers are also increasingly cautious about handing over their credit card details online,” said Mrs Mentiplay.  

The Report also looked at the shopping preferences of consumers and found more than three times as many people still prefer shopping in a physical shop to an online store (60% vs 17%). The preference for a shopfront experience is even stronger among females than males (65% vs 54%). 

Read the full report here.