Retailers have reported a 0.4 per cent lift in sales in June, which was slightly ahead of market expectations of 0.3 per cent.
Seasonally adjusted retail spending rose to $26.813 billion in the month, according to Australian Bureau of Statistics data released on Friday.
Spending on food led the rises at 0.4 per cent, while clothing, footwear and personal accessories rose by 1.7 per cent in June, following a 2.3 per cent rise in May.
There was also a rise in spending at cafes, restaurants and on takeaway at 0.9 per cent, while household goods spending lifted 0.4 per cent.
Spending at department stores, however, fell by 1.2 per cent.
Sarah Hunter from BIS Oxford Economics said department stores continue to remain “under fire” from e-commerce, which continues to squeeze prices and retailers’ margins.
Online retailing now accounts for 5.7 per cent of total sales, up from 4.1 per cent a year ago.
“Although the data beat our expectations, it does come off the back of a very weak March quarter, when volumes grew by just 0.2 per cent,” Ms Hunter said.
“Broadly speaking growth remains very patchy, and given the ongoing weakness in wage and other income growth we expect this to continue through the rest of this year.”
The Australian dollar has moved slightly lower following the 1130 AEST data release, to be trading at 73.61 US cents at 1139 AEST, down from 73.65 US cents.