Graph: Rupal Hira
The data in the graph is from Statistics New Zealand’s Retail Trade Survey.
The year of 1995 wasn’t included in this graph, as there was only two quarters of data.
It’s also important to note that 2015 is missing the fourth quarter results, which may skew this year’s sales to look less than 2014.
Non-store and commission based retailing, which includes ecommerce-only stores, was making sales of around $250 million in 1996.
That has since increased to almost a billion in sales in 2014, showing the growth of the internet as a retail platform over time.
Quarter one and two of 2015 increased from last year’s results, but quarter three has performed worse than last year.
Department stores made around $1.8 billion in sales in 1996 and around $4.1 billion in 2014, contrary to popular theories about their decline.
Clothing, footwear and accessories made about $1.7 billion in sales in 1996.This has since grown to around $3.3 billion in 2014.
Supermarkets have gone from strength to strength, even throughout the Global Financial Crisis years.
In 1996, supermarkets were making about $7 billion worth of sales and in 2014, sales had increased to around $17 billion.
Motor vehicle and parts retail has had a less steady rise in sales. Sales dipped in 2006 and after 2007 in the wake of the recession, and then picked up again in 2011.
Hardware, building and garden supplies was much the same, decreasing in sales in 2003 and significantly in 2008. Sales started to steadily rise again 2012.
Food and beverage sales have also steadily increased since the 90s, even during the recession, although growth did slow in that period. Sales were around $3.4 billion in 1996 and rose to $8.1 billion in 2014.
As for the final quarter of 2015, Retail NZ says Christmas spending is looking strong.
“Retailers are more optimistic about next quarter’s results, with 85 percent expecting to meet or exceed their sales targets,” Retail NZ general manager public affairs Greg Harford says.
“Christmas shopping and Boxing Day sales will be key drivers of this optimism, as consumers gear up for a bumper shopping season.”