Insights on Business
I have recently been talking to retail clients about how hard they are finding business over the last year or 2 and especially over the last few months. The most obvious cause of this is the uncertainty in global economies and lack of consumer confidence.
We also have the cloud of the new carbon tax with no one really certain how this will affect our costs of living.
What we hear and read tells us that things are going to get worse before they get better and this rightly causes consumers to consider their spending habits and cut out non essential shopping items.
However I am concerned that another issue is with the rising Australian $ and the rising popularity of internet shopping. I do not enjoy shopping at the best of times, therefore the convenience of jumping online and grabbing items cheap may be convenient and seem like a good idea, but what impact is this having on our country? If I buy online, I should at least be looking to buy from Australian companies online even if I can get goods cheaper overseas!
The longer term impact of this shift in buying patterns is that consumers could change their habits, and turn away from shop front shopping in favour of doing most of their shopping online. Of course the trade off is that when you buy from a shop direct, you are not only paying for a product, but are buying the service and after sales service that goes with the product.
Free international trade may seem like a good idea on the surface, however when it has the affect of sending our consumers overseas with the lure of the high Australian dollar, then I for one am not a fan.
But what can we do about it?
- Personally make a commitment to buy from Australian business even if the costs are slightly higher!
- Encourage your family and friends to support Australian businesses!
- If you have a business in Australia, you need to understand the changing environment and ensure you have a web presence!
I for one plan on taking an active role by buying local!
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