Image by Allie Hylton
Online shopping has become increasingly popular. In the last year alone, online sales have increased 14%, and are predicted to increase another 62% by the end of 2016 according to comScore.
Some Facts and Figures About Online Retailers
According to a recent survey by comScore online auction sites and global retailers captured about 50% of the online internet visitors world-wide. To give you a comparison Apple captured 9.7% and they were fourth in the survey.
So why are auction sites and global retailers which don’t belong to a specific brand so popular? The answer is that they meet the needs of a buyer a lot better than ‘single brand sites.’
This doesn’t mean that having your own cart and online shop is bad, it just means that the global retailers are an extra tool to use to sell or buy products.
Analysing the Buyers’ Needs
There are 5 main reasons why someone uses the internet for something shopping-related:
1. They need ideas – they might be for a present, or for something to fill a purpose but they don’t have a specific product in mind, maybe they need some furniture, but they don’t yet know exactly what they want.
2. They need personalised recommendations – raise your hand if you have ever gone onto Amazon just to read product reviews.
3. They are looking for the latest products – “I like phones and I am really curious to see what the latest brands have concocted”.
4. They want to save time/it’s practical – it’s a lot easier and faster to buy a camera online than having to get into your car and go to a shop to do the same thing.
5. They want the best deals – you have access to a lot of shops when you use the internet, and there are a lot of services that help you make price comparisons
Meeting Those Needs
So how do online auction sites, global retailers and similar sites meet customer needs?
1. They list products for a lot of categories, so if you want to buy a gadget for your son, you could just go and scour the “Computing and Technology” category before you zone into a specific item.
2. They offer a lot of reviews and make them easily accessible; when I want to buy something I often look at the reviews before I look at the price.
3. They promote the latest products through deals or simply by featuring them on the home page, but they are not tied into just one brand, so you can see what the competition is doing a lot easier.
4. Because global retailers offer such diverse product ranges, they will have plenty of tools to facilitate mailing and delivery, plus being able to choose from a bigger array of products can save research time
5. Just type “Apple iPad” in Amazon’s search box: how long is the list of prices and shops you can buy one from? How many accessories will also be displayed? What happens if you do the same on the Apple.com site? You’ll only get one price for each of their product line.
Online shopping is one of the easiest ways to get what you want. Whether you want a specific product or you are just browsing, having everything at your fingertips is just more convenient.
If you stopped for a moment and thought about the most significant purchases you carried out, without counting food, how many of those were from online shops in the last 6 months?
Elise Lévêque is a freelancer who just loves spending her free time shopping… it’s hard for her to resist a pair of nice shoes. Here, she writes for deal2reveal.