Research & Forecast Report H1 2021
The importance of Australian CBDs remains significant to the contribution to both the total economy and jobs. The CBDs have always been the centre of economic activity and a driver of economic growth. Our analysis shows that to June 2020 the CBD council regions accounted for $469.33 billion of economic output which is just over 25% of the total Australian GDP.
Customers are heavily driven by experience and the need for connection and face to face interaction, something that an online experience can never replicate. With tenant diversification and a commitment to be sustainably and socially responsible, landlords will be able to differentiate and make their centres more attractive by becoming more than just a place to shop. Offering consumers leisure and entertainment within the complex, is a defensive measure against the growth of e-commerce, creating a place where people want to spend their down time.
Although 2020 saw a significant spike in online sales during the height of social distancing restrictions, after restrictions were relaxed there was an easing of online sales. While online sales continue to trend higher than pre-pandemic levels, it is also evident that consumers have remained eager to return in store to make purchases. In March 2021, 9.4% of total Australian retail turnover was credited to online sales – of which the majority was to non-food retailers. This trends well above the pre-pandemic five-year average of 4.7%.