Customers in APAC are becoming increasingly environmentally conscious, with growing expectations that the brands catering to them are environmentally responsible, from sourcing to packaging, according to a new study.

Adobe and YouGov surveyed almost 7,000 consumers across seven countries in the region (Australia, China, India, Japan, Malaysia, Thailand, and Singapore) and found that almost a quarter prefer shopping online as they consider it to be less taxing on the environment.

At the same time, more and more customers are open to purchasing from environmentally friendly retailers: 44% of respondents said it’s important for retailers to be transparent about where their products are sourced.

And around a third (34%) indicated they are more receptive to retailers who minimise their use of packaging while just under a third are more receptive to retailers who are donating towards environmental causes.

But environmental considerations are only one factor influencing the region’s consumers: they are increasingly focused on experiences when it comes to online brand engagement.

For online retailers, it’s no longer a simple case of bricks vs. clicks anymore. While price remains a key determinant, the study suggested that retailers need to focus on developing seamless CX strategies, including ensuring websites work well on smartphones and offering a dedicated app.

Nicholas Kontopoulos, head of APAC Commerce Marketing, Adobe said customers in APAC expect more personalised engagements, and brands need to craft strategies with customer experience at the heart.

“There is also a requirement for online retailers to demonstrate clear brand utility for customers in return for their information, create more engagement and engender closer, more meaningful and lasting relationships with customers,” he added.

Other findings from the report:

• 60% responded positively to the prospect of AI being used to increase sales and profits by online retailers, if that use resulted in a better customer experience.

• 20% were receptive to getting automated product suggestions based on their purchase history but 50% said it’s important that brands safeguard their data.

• 28% said they would be less likely to purchase from an online retailer if they were sent unrelated marketing communications.

• 39% said they would avoid shopping with an online retailer if their credit card didn’t get accepted.

• 25% would avoid purchase if cash on delivery is not offered.

• 66% would shop again on a retailer website that offers free delivery.

• 47% would come back because of a free returns policy.

Sourced from Adobe; additional content by WARC staff