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Online shopping embraced worldwide

News, 04 May 2015

NEW YORK: A quarter of global consumers are already ordering grocery products online for home delivery and over a half (55%) are willing to do so in future, according to an online survey of 30,000 people in 60 countries.

But such enthusiasm for ecommerce does not stop at online delivery, with younger shoppers particularly open to using all forms of ecommerce options, the new research from Nielsen, the research firm, suggested.

Its new global ecommerce survey found 18% of global consumers currently use online or mobile coupons, but about two-thirds (65%) are willing to use them in the future.

Downloading a retailer's loyalty program app on a mobile device to receive information or offers is used by 14% of global respondents, but 63% say they are willing to use one when it is made available.

Over half (57%) are open to using in-store "click and collect" services, although only 12% of global online shoppers currently do so, and another 54% would like to use online subscription services in the future.

Similarly, 58% would like to use a virtual store if the option was available, 64% are open to mobile shopping lists and nearly two-thirds (65%) would be willing to try self-checkout.

"Time-starved consumers want to use technology to make shopping faster, easier and more efficient," said Patrick Dodd, Nielsen's president of global retailer vertical.

"As we've seen with self-checkout, one of the more mature flexible retailing options included in the survey, as more retailers incorporate these options in their in-store and online offerings, adoption rates will likely increase," he added.

And this was another key finding from the survey – consumers are not looking to discard physical stores in favour of an online-only shopping experience.

Brick-and-mortar retailers should be encouraged that the great majority (61%) of global consumers say going to a grocery store is an "enjoyable and engaging experience" while 57% think grocery shopping in a retail store is a fun day out for the family.

Consumers, faced with more shopping choices than ever before, are instead looking for a "blended" experience of in-store digitalisation that delivers the same ease and convenience as online shopping.

"Consumers are no longer shopping entirely online or offline; rather, they're taking a blended approach, using whatever channel best suits their needs," said Dodd.

"The most successful retailers and manufacturers will be at the intersection of the physical and virtual worlds, leveraging technology to satisfy shoppers however, wherever and whenever they want to shop."

Data sourced from Nielsen; additional content by Warc