Friday, 15 June 2018 06:02

Retail businesses using social media more: ABS


More than half the Australian businesses in retail trade (59%) had a Web presence in 2016-17 and 56% had a social media presence, according to data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

The ABS also pointed out that a total of 831,000 businesses were using some form of IT in 2016-17. This compared to a total of 799,000 in 2015-16.

Key indicators of the use of technology by businesses were broadband use, a Web presence, a social media presence and the use of the Internet for commerce.

Percentage-wise, the number with Internet access rose only marginally, from 95.3% in 2015-16 to 95.4% in 2016-17. Of these, nearly all (99.4%) had broadband access.

The ABS also released statistics about innovation in Australian business, defining innovation as "the development or introduction of new or significantly improved goods, services, processes or methods".

It found that 44.5% of the total businesses had indulged in some activity that could be defined as innovative.

The ABS provided the following statistics:

  • By employment size, 70% of businesses with 200 or more persons employed were innovation-active, compared to 36% of businesses with 0 to 4 people employed.
  • By industry, information media and telecommunications had the highest proportion of businesses that had introduced at least one type of innovation (54%) with goods or services (29%) the most common type of innovation introduced.
  • Just over one in five businesses had innovation still in development (21%) as at 30 June 2017, with marketing methods (10%) the most common type of innovation still in development.

Around 59.3% of businesses were found to be placing orders via the Internet, with 37.1% receiving orders through an online presence.

Online income was $394.3 billion in 2016-17, compared to $321.4 billion in 2015-16.

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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