The main reasons why customers choose to shop online
Online shopping has been growing exponentially each year for the past decade and it’s here to stay. In the age of COVID-19, online shopping has been a necessity, with businesses being forced to adapt to the new circumstances.
eCommerce is dominating the consumer playing field as spending preferences and comfort levels radically shift with the new normal. With the digitalization of most businesses, we barely even use physical banknotes nowadays, everything is getting paid via card or devices that have NFC. And with the many perks of online shopping, it’s no surprise that consumers are turning to digital stores instead of brick and mortar shops.
Society has adapted to the new norms and conditions, in fact, half of the consumers ( about 48%) say that they would be fine if they never shopped in a brick-and-mortar store again, and nearly three-quarters of consumers (74%) believe the majority of consumer shopping will happen online in the future.
With numerous surveys being made online, we’ve gathered the results and identified the main reasons why consumers opt to shop online. Here they are, ordered by popularity:
The main reasons why consumers prefer to shop online:
The main reason why consumers turn to online shopping is convenience- over 34% of consumers say that their online spending has increased in the 3rd quarter, this year, even while overall spending dropped. Consumers prefer to shop online because of how easy it is to find the product they are looking for, and the ordering process is very simple: you order the product, confirm payment and then you can see the shipping status from the comfort of your home. You can buy any product without having to leave your bed!
Variety of products
Consumers want to see all of their options when searching for a product. The ability to compare the prices, reviews, and features in seconds when shopping online has made finding the right product easier for modern-day shoppers. Previously, they would have to go from store to store and compare the prices, specifications and the only review they had was from the aisle clerk. For almost all product categories, consumers prefer to shop online. The only exception is essential products, like groceries, cleaning products, and over-the-counter medicine.
There is no surprise that most consumers are shopping online because of the current COVID-19 pandemic. They are trying to minimize potential exposure to the virus by avoiding physical stores. 63% of consumers have a greater appreciation for Amazon now than they did before the pandemic and 58% of consumers say that they are shopping from Amazon more frequently than they did before the pandemic.
Once, it was fairly uncommon to offer free shipping, but now the simple luxury of free shipping is enough to make customers choose to buy products online. From a retailer’s point of view, providing free shipping can give customers a slight nudge to buy more and “balance out” the delivery costs. It can also result in higher store conversion rates and reduce cart abandonment – a habit of 52% of consumers.
Price is the single most important factor when it comes to the consumer’s decision to purchase products: when shopping online, 74% of consumers say that they are looking for the products with the lowest price. Given the fact that over 60% of consumers are worried about their current financial situation, it makes sense that shoppers are looking online to see what can they get out of their budget
Gone are the days when you have to wait weeks for your order to arrive. Thanks to the rapid expansion of logistics networks and warehouses, nowadays you can get the product that you’ve ordered online on the same day! Research shows that consumers want their products delivered as soon as possible. Over 50% of online shoppers are willing to pay extra for faster shipping. Thanks to its global warehouse and logistics network, Amazon has become one of the most reliable retailers when it comes to delivery speed. 64% of consumers say that when they need to get a product fast, they look for it on Amazon.
One of the most important factors when buying certain products is social proof. This can have a huge impact on the decision-making process and it turns out that 72% of shoppers are influenced by the product with the best ratings and reviews. The act of crowdsourcing opinions gives online retailers a big credibility boost by establishing trust between other consumers and the product. Would you like to learn more about how customer reviews can help your business? Read more.
The ability to compare prices
As mentioned, price is the most important factor for online purchases. Consumers are more price-conscious than ever before, and they can whittle down wishlists by assessing the competition. They can easily navigate from one product page to another to find the best price in a few clicks.
With online shopping, it’s easy for a consumer to search for deals, join reward programs, and get promotions sent right to their inboxes. There’s also the fact that companies design their season’s advertising around major holiday sales events like Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Christmas, and some consumers only shop when they see those deals.
Given the current circumstances, online shopping is here to stay and grow. More and more users choose to shop online each day and as delivery services get better and better, consumers will choose to shop even essential products like food and cleaning solutions online. Whether it’s to cut costs, validate purchases with social proof, or to have something delivered – it’s often a combination of multiple factors, online shopping is advantageous in more ways than one.