Australian retailers are forecast to spend $4.9 billion on technology products and services in 2019, according to Gartner, which said the anticipated spend represented a 3.2 percent increase on 2018.
The figure was joined with optimism for the retail sector from the analyst firm, which this week is hosting its Gartner Symposium on the Gold Coast in Queensland.
Speaking at the event, Gartner senior director and analyst Thomas O’Connor said physical retail was bucking popular opinion and thriving, and that global retail sales would increase 4.8 percent in 2018, with more stores opening than there were closing.
“In retail, there is only one battle that matters — the fight for the customer,” he said.
Gartner also predicts that by 2023, Alibaba and Amazon will have captured 40 percent of global online retail, up from 33 percent in 2017.
“There are many ways for retailers to differentiate from e-commerce giants, and therefore profitably coexist,” O'Connor said.
“We think that yes, there will be a robust retail industry. But the rules of the game are changing rapidly. Different kinds of retail businesses will continue to arrive and challenge the status quo.”
Global retail spending will grow 3.6 percent to reach about $203.6 billion, the company said.
Across six segments of technology spend including internal services; software; telecom services; devices; and data centres services, all except telecom services are set to see increased global investment next year.