Monday, April 12, 2010

30 Percent of Consumers Use More Than Three Commerce Channels

ATG, a provider of commerce solutions, announced the results of a consumer survey that was deployed to analyze how consumers use various channels as they research product and service options, and make purchases. The cross-channel shopping survey also asked consumers about their researching and purchasing experiences when using different channels.

The survey found that more than three-quarters of consumers use two or more channels and nearly one-third use three or more channels to browse, research and purchase products. The findings also identified an opportunity for merchants to increase online sales and improve contact center efficiency by offering more information on the Web. The survey results highlight an evolving role for the emerging mobile channel and more traditional catalog channels, and point to opportunities for e-mail marketing and the incorporation of social media into consumers' online commerce activities.

The highlights of consumers' cross channel experiences include:

-- 78% said they use two or more channels to browse, research and make purchases; 30% said they use three channels or more

-- 43% said they start their research online or through a mobile device, but then need to call a customer service or call center representative to complete the transaction because the necessary product or service information cannot be found online

-- 39% said they browse via the online or mobile channel and then make purchases in the store because they prefer to touch and feel the product; 36% said do this to compare several brands of the same product

-- 78% of all consumers say they use catalogs to browse and research products or services at least four times a year

In addition to looking at consumers' use of computers and customer service representatives as a means to gain more information about or to complete the purchase of a product or service, the survey also uncovered interesting data about mobile commerce, with an emphasis on the 18-34 age bracket. Overall results found that:

-- 27% of all consumers 18 and older use their mobile devices to browse or research products and services at least four times a year, and that number jumps to 41% for the 18-34 year-old age group

-- When it comes to making purchases, 13% of all consumers 18 and older are doing this on their mobile devices at least four times a year; 23% of the 18-34 age group are doing this at least four times a year and 8% are doing it weekly

The survey results also uncovered a need for more awareness around the incorporation of commerce activities in social networking sites like Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter.

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