Most business owners and marketers who have been in the business a while feel that they know their consumers, but such complacency can be counterproductive. The simple truth is that consumers change their habits rapidly and preconceived notions about behaviors can become outdated very quickly. A recent study from Bronto Software provides insights into some of the way ecommerce is changing in the modern age.
Bronto Software is releasing a series of reports on consumer behavior, the first of which came out in April. The company partnered with Ipsos to conduct a survey in January 2015 that consisted of 1,012 consumers in the United States who bought online within the past 12 months. The data showed that many consumers are influenced by digital channels, multiple devices, and shop online regularly.
“According to the data, consumers are not spontaneously window shopping online stores or casually browsing product pages. They are utilizing multiple devices to extend their shopping experience and influence purchase decisions, creating a nonlinear ‘path to purchase’ that today’s marketers need to understand and embrace,” said Jim Davidson, Head of Research for Bronto Software. “The research included in the ‘Consumers Tell All’ series provides insights to help today’s marketer understand the customer lifecycle, behaviors and preferences that can assist in the development of effective strategies to meet the demands of the consumer-driven e-commerce landscape.”
One key take away from the report is that three out of five (60%) of consumers shop online at least once per month. Nearly one in four (24%) of the respondents said they shopped online at least once per week. Online shopping channels are growing in importance and business owners can capitalize on that by using internet marketing to reach people on their regular online shopping trips.
Furthermore, it’s not the usual suspects driving the growth in ecommerce according to the data. Though people often think of women being online shopaholics, the study found that men were almost twice as likely to shop online weekly. According to the survey, 30 percent of males shop online once per week compared to only 18 percent of females. To be fair, this is part of an interesting trend where women are shopping online less frequently. The researchers noted that females shopping online once per week declined 7 percent.
The prime demographic for regular online shoppers is more inclusive than conventional women would suggest. Three out of four (76%) consumers between the ages of 18 and 49 year olds shop online at least once per week. And though members of the Baby Boomer generation used to do more weekly online shopping, the study reported that weekly shoppers aged 40-49 dropped by 9 percent.
The study also provided some insight on where in the country the most online sales were taking place. Online shoppers in the West are the most active with 66% shopping at least once per month. Similarly, the proportion of weekly shoppers in the Northeast jumped 5 percent. The South and Midwest were the areas that saw weekly online shopping rates drop. The South and Midwest saw declines of 4 percent and 3 percent respectively.
Much of the change noted by this report is driven by changes to mobile technology. Mobile commerce has allowed people to shop quickly and easily wherever they are. We’ll cover more on that data when it’s released in a few weeks.
For more information about how different demographics respond to internet marketing, read this article with nine stats to help you reach your target demographic.