Amsterdam, September 22, 2020 - The relaxation of the measures to get the coronavirus under control and the reopening of the physical stores has had little impact on the online shopping behavior of consumers in Europe. This is evident from research by Adobe into the trends in the field of online shopping during and after the (intelligent) lockdown among more than 3000 * Europeans. 59 percent of those surveyed regularly shopped online during the lockdown. This is almost the same as the 60 percent who frequently make an online purchase after the relaxation of the measures.
The corona crisis had an impact on the purchasing behavior of Europeans, especially during the second quarter of 2020. The research shows that 93 percent of the respondents made at least one online purchase during the (intelligent) lockdown period. More than half (59%) of the respondents regularly used e-commerce. It is striking that 69 percent of the respondents bought a product online for the first time that they previously only bought in the store. Food, clothing and health and care products are the top three.
Online shopping remains popular
This growth in online shopping activity, a logical consequence of the measures against the corona virus, has subsequently stabilized. Nearly half of respondents (42%) say that the closure of stores due to the pandemic prompted them to spend more online. However, the survey shows that 60 percent of respondents still shop online regularly and nearly all respondents (95%) have made at least one online purchase since the lockdown was relaxed.
Avoiding crowds (55%), finding the best price (49%) and saving time (45%) are the main reasons for shopping more online. Where the best price is an important factor for the younger generation (56% compared to 42% for the elderly), while avoiding crowds is the highest for the older generation (52% compared to 38% for the young).
Room for improvement
These developments in the field of online purchasing behavior of consumers offer opportunities for brands. In order to make the most of these, it is important to optimize the customer experience offered online. 35 percent of the respondents said they had a neutral or negative online buying experience during or after the lockdown. The main reasons mentioned are the slowness and malfunctioning of the product pages (40%) or the payment pages (34%).
A negative online experience has a direct impact on brands because it causes potential customers to create a strong preference for the large online web stores instead of the brands' own channels. For example, more than half of the respondents (54%) indicate that they prefer to make online purchases via a large webshop site or application than directly via a brand site or application (5%).
“This study clearly shows that customers expect the entire retail industry to improve their online shopping experience,” said Christophe Marée, Marketing Director for Southern and Western Europe, Adobe. “Demand is there, and consumers expect multi-channel offerings. In this new digital age, companies must provide their customers with a compelling shopping experience. To achieve this, they need to find the balance between connecting online and in-store experiences.
Changing purchase criteria
The current health crisis has not only changed the way Europeans consume, it has also affected their purchasing criteria. For example, the survey found that 48 percent of respondents are now more concerned about where the products come from and how they are made. The two main reasons for this for the respondents are support for local businesses during the lockdown (58%) and the protection of the environment (53%).
* This survey was conducted in collaboration with Advanis in July 2020. Survey was conducted among 1,001, 1,012 and 1,000 consumers in France, Germany and the UK respectively.
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