On the 2nd of March, Sarah MacDonald, Commerce Regional Marketing at Adobe presented “The Shop Never Stops” report at E-commerce expo, a leading adtech and martech conference in the UK. The survey spanning 7,000 consumers across Europe, Middle East and Africa looks at how the pandemic has accelerated some e-commerce trends and how shoppers' habits have dramatically changed. Are they temporary or here to stay? 

Here are some key takeaways from the report to better understand consumers’ online preferences:

  • Overall customers have embraced online shopping: people who were already shopping frequently before the pandemic are even more comfortable shopping online now. 55% shop online more frequently and 60% have increased their online spend since Covid-19.

But, most importantly, in 2021, online customers are:

  • savvy spenders: browsing websites for a good deal is an increasing trend, replacing high street window shopping. 57% are more likely to look online for discounts and offers. 63% would abandon a transaction if the retailer doesn’t offer free returns or free delivery.
  • more impatient: 70% are likely to shop elsewhere if they are unable to find a product quickly on a retailer website.
  • looking for security but also less friction. They expect the ‘one click checkout’ to be the norm to simplify the shopping process.
  • more interested in personalisation. 49% said they would be more likely to make a purchase if products are suggested to them based on their previous purchase history.
  • caring: 69% shoppers shared that good environmental credentials are important or very important. 49% would spend more with an eco-friendly retailer

Nevertheless, 47% of the consumers are interested in returning to in-store shopping once stores open. In the meantime, the websites that will offer something as close as possible to the in-store experience such as detailed product descriptions, live chat, advisor-on-hand or any AR experience will be able to stand out with their online customer experience.  

As retail begins to open up and many marketers tackle quarterly planning, it will be crucial for leaders in the e-commerce industry to ensure their strategy aligns with the new expectations and behaviours of shoppers. As habits change, understanding your audience will be even more important in the ‘new normal’.