The State of an Online Consumer: Key Takeaways & E-commerce Insights

July 7, 2016

According to the latest UPS study of the domestic (US) market, more than 83% of online consumers are satisfied with their shopping experience. Out of 5,118 shoppers surveyed, 93% stated that they usually buy from small online retailers , and one of the main reasons why they choose to trust small businesses is because they are offering something new on the market.

The State of an Online Consumer: Key Takeaways & E-commerce Insights

Naturally, innovation is still the number one factor that drives purchases. But what type of devices do we use to shop online? Which industries are the most popular in the world of ecommerce? Finally, what defines and unifies us, online shoppers? If you are running an ecommerce store, all of this data is extremely important, if not vital, for the future success of your online business.

Our primary shopping devices

The aforementioned UPS survey has managed to provide us with a clear picture about our primary shopping devices as well. While a great majority of us use mobile devices to browse for products and services (mobile searches in general surpassed desktop searches last year), desktop computers are still the primary devices we use for shopping online. In fact, according to the aforementioned survey, 91% of online consumers have used a PC to research and purchase a product, as opposed to 41% of buyers that have used a mobile device to do the research, and only 30% of them to actually buy the product. It is a question of conformism and habits – we trust our phones when we are researching shops and services, but we still prefer to handle our purchases via desktop. Tablets are the least favorite devices among shoppers, with only 32% of consumers using this particular gadget to research a certain product, and only 26% of them use it to buy something.

The Most Popular Industry

While setting up and maintaining a profitable and sustainable Ecommerce store can be a bit of a tricky undertaking, there is that one industry that has been measuring a constant above average growth for the past decade. You’ve probably guessed it – it’s the computers & electronics department. While wholesale websites and websites dedicated to home appliances and furniture are very popular among online consumers, we simply love our gadgets and it seems that your average online consumer cannot get enough of them. For Q4 of 2014, ecommerce stores operating within this industry reported a 19% increase in average order value, and a 41% increase in sales. Astonishing ROI right? However, an average conversion rate in e-commerce is 3%, and an average CVR in this industry is 1,04%. Which doesn’t mean that gadgets aren’t that popular, on the contrary, there is just too many of us looking for them. Plus, you have to count on the fact that buyers looking for devices will always research all possible options.

A Few Interesting Demographics

Not surprisingly, Millennials are among the high rollers when we are talking about online purchases. On average, a Millennial will spend as much as $ 2,000 online annually, which is a lot more than any other demographic group. Although women account for as much as 58% of online spending, men are equally thrilled about buying stuff online. More than 40% of men (aged 18 to 34) would love to handle all purchases online, but for now they usually buy gadgets, appliances and equipment of all sort. As much as 41% of men love to buy stuff from auction websites, such as eBay, compared to 33% of women. In general, the female audience believes that advertisers don’t understand them. Companies spend a lot of time and resources in marketing clothing and other retail products of this kind, and as it seems – most of the female audience actually prefers buying clothes in the traditional way. So if you are running an ecommerce web store and you are selling women’s clothing, the least you can do is offer them free returns in case they don’t like your product.

The Future of Ecommerce

Evidently, there is a bright future ahead for both online consumers and ecommerce owners. While we are still struggling to increase conversions via mobile devices, more and more shoppers are turning to the Internet when they are searching for a product to buy. Almost half of the entire global population has already used the Internet to purchase something already, and it is just a matter of time when we won’t be able to think about any sort of retail commerce without adding the letter E in front of that term.

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