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Online shoppers demand flexibility in all the process

Smartphone comparisons and social media influence purchase decisions

  • Key4Communications
10/03/2015

UPS and comScore released the second Pulse of the Online Shopper Europe study, analyzing what drives an online shopper's full path to purchase. Results show the advent of the 'flex shopper' - an online buyer who easily switches channels and devices when evaluating and purchasing products.

The European version is part of a global study that examines emerging trends from Asia, Brazil, Mexico and the U.S. Key global findings include:

    -Online shoppers want alternative delivery locations and more payment options.
    -Mobile is a catalyst to omnichannel shopping and retailers should address limitations.
    -Free shipping is still important along with a greater emphasis on returns.

32% of consumers prefer their online order be delivered to locations other than home

European consumers expect a compelling online and in-store shopping experience, and the flexibility to choose when and how they receive their items. Online shoppers across markets are looking for alternative delivery options, especially in Europe where 32% said they would prefer their online order be delivered to locations other than their home, an increase from the previous edition of the survey.

59% of shoppers are satisfied with the amount of product detail offered

Detailed product information and online content may never replace a well-informed sales associate, but it can support consumer research in advance of store visits. Only 59% of shoppers are satisfied with the amount of product detail offered to help them determine if a product meets their needs. In response to questions related to delivery information, more than half (52%) of respondents said they prefer seeing the expected arrival date rather than the number of days it will take for the product to arrive.

35% of online consumers compare prices on their smartphones while in-store

With new web and mobile technology making it easier to comparison shop, 35% of online consumers said they compare prices on their smartphones while in-store. Social media also influences online purchases for 1-in-3 European shoppers, and both satisfied and dissatisfied shoppers said they would voice their opinions about their online experiences on social media.

53% of shoppers are satisfied with the ease of making online returns/exchanges

Providing delivery options at checkout and flexible returns are also important – and only 53% of shoppers are satisfied with the ease of making online returns/exchanges. Delivery times are also a factor, as 58% of shoppers have abandoned a cart due to lengthy delivery times or a delivery date not being provided. Free shipping continues to drive purchasing decisions as 67% said they would wait an additional 1-3 days for free domestic shipping.

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