Almost Everybody Starts with “Just Looking”

According to a recent Episerver study, “Reimagining Commerce,” reported by Internet Retailer, most shoppers gravitate to websites to do something other than make a purchase, like browsing, product comparison, query research and more. Though U.S. consumer online sales will pass $500 billion by 2020, what some brands fail to realize is that consumers don’t always visit their site to buy.

Like a 21st century version of the mall, where shoppers often went to hang out first and purchase second, consumers are visiting websites with buying as a secondary concern. Brands overly focused on transactional affairs too often miss out on other key engagement opportunities, notes the report.

Two-thirds of shoppers expect to make more online purchases in 2017 than they did in 2016. This will be more pronounced among shoppers who purchase every time they visit a brand’s website or mobile app with the intent of purchasing

92% of consumers visit a brand’s website for the first time to do something other than make a purchase. 45% of shoppers are searching for a product/service, 26% are comparing prices or other variables between brands and 11% are looking for store details like hours, location and contact information. Even when visiting a brand’s website or mobile app with the intent of purchasing, 32% of consumers rarely or never make a purchase, says the report.

Key Findings reported by Internet Retailer

Intents and Preferences

  • 92% of consumers visit a brand’s website for the first time to do something other than make a purchase
  • Even when visiting a brand’s website or mobile app with the intent of purchasing, 32% of consumers rarely or never make a purchase

Consumer Experience

  • 98% of shoppers have been dissuaded from completing a purchase because of incomplete or incorrect content, with 32% of consumers being dissuaded every time
  • 35% of shoppers feel brands do a poor or very poor job of customizing the online shopping experience, with just 7% believing that brands do this very well
  • 59% of shoppers are interested in personalization as a part of their online shopping experience, and 43% are open to personalized in-store experiences

Across all products and services, online shoppers list desktop or laptop as their preferred digital channel. However, mobile devices overall (smartphones and tablets) are quickly growing in popularity. A quarter of consumers use a mobile device very often when shopping online, compared to 23% who use desktops.

Device Used For Shopping

Frequency of shopping (by device)

Very often

Often

Desktop and/or laptop

23%

40%

Smartphone

17%

26%

Tablet

8%

13%

Source: Internet Retailer, March 2017

Device preference holds true when broken down by product/ service. The majority of shoppers are turning to desktop for all shopping needs, but nearly half of consumers use smartphones to shop for personal entertainment and digital products, and over half use tablets to do the same.

Age is a major factor in how consumers engage brands online. Shoppers ages 18-44 shop on smartphones most often, followed by desktop or laptop. Conversely, those who are 45 and older are much more likely to shop on desktops very often

Percentage of consumers who shop online for the following products/services

  • Personal entertainment… 85%
  • Apparel…85%
  • Travel …82%
  • Digital products …79%
  • Entertainment …74%
  • Paying a utility bill …74%
  • Electronics …71%
  • Home/furnishings …64%

Finally, says the report, even when visiting a brand’s website or mobile app with the intent of purchasing, 32% of consumers rarely or never make a purchase.

For additional information from Internet Retailer, please visit here.

Source: Media Post Mobile