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New Study: Retailers Must Prioritize Emerging Markets to Get Ahead

Data shows that consumers will choose cost over brand loyalty when shopping online

KING OF PRUSSIA, PA – January 17, 2018Radial, the leader in omnichannel commerce technology and operations, today announced the results of its global consumer insights study, “Outsmart eCommerce Giants to Win Online Shoppers in 2018: A Guide.” The study surveyed more than 4,000 consumers in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada and Australia to understand their online buying habits and expectations. The findings proved that eCommerce marketplaces are setting the tone for global online shopping—and to get ahead, retailers should consider prioritizing emerging markets and offering new forms of value.

Notably, the study found that the majority of consumers who shop online hold a membership to an eCommerce marketplace such as Amazon or eBay. America leads the pack with nearly 20 percent more memberships than other English-speaking countries, at 72.6 percent. Across the regions, Amazon is the favorite marketplace. Australia is the only outlier, which is not surprising, considering Amazon launched in the region in December 2017. In Australia, eBay is the leading marketplace with 63.8 percent of online shoppers. Other marketplaces including, Rakuten, Alibaba and Allegro fall significantly short, controlling less than 15 percent of consumer memberships.

Trends in customer expectations and habits appeared across all regions where marketplaces are prevalent, most notably:

  • Online shoppers are purchasing lower cost items online; the U.K. reported the largest group of value shoppers, with 56.2 percent spending less than $100 per month. The U.S. was split between those that spend less than $100 per month (42.2 percent) and those that spend $100-$500 per month (42.3 percent).
  • Over 60 percent of respondents across all regions reported that purchasing products at the lowest price possible is most important to them when shopping online.
  • In the U.S., 60 percent of consumers expect their goods to arrive at their doorstep at no cost. Only 23.5 percent expressed a willingness to pay up to $10 USD and 6.3 percent were willing to pay between $10 and $25. As delivery cost rose, consumer willingness to pay declined.
  • Timeliness of deliveries remains important to customers, however, in the U.S., respondents are flexible, expecting to receive packages in two days or less (34.6 percent) or under a week (34.1 percent). That said, across all regions, less than 9 percent indicated delivery times “don’t matter” to them.
  • Ancillary factors, including “one-click checkout,” were reported as being of lesser importance, proving that cost reigns king for online shoppers. 

As shorter delivery times and lower fees become commoditized in marketplace-driven retail economies, retailers will need to find new ways to demonstrate value for their customers. According to the study, the top categories for global consumer online spending include clothing and accessories (55.5 percent), electronics (43.2 percent), and health and beauty (28.7 percent), with grocery showing significant traction in the U.K. (31 percent). By understanding what and why consumers are shopping online, retailers can better tailor their offerings to meet demand.

“To succeed in today’s economy, retailers do not need to take extraordinary measures to get ahead,” said Stefan Weitz, executive vice president, technology services at Radial. “They need to understand their customers and provide value where it matters most. However, things like free shipping are easier said than done, and retailers are struggling to meet expectations while remaining profitable. By partnering with a third-party provider to cut costs, expedite processes, and guarantee security, retailers can ensure benefits are applied directly to their customers.”

Radial provides retailers with the tools they need to eliminate friction and deliver an exceptional consumer experience. With a pre-integrated, modular stack of technologies and robust operational services, retailers are armed with the tools they need to meet mounting customer expectations and drive results for their top and bottom lines. To learn more about how retailers can thrive in the age of marketplaces, read the eBook here.

About Radial

Radial is the leader in omnichannel commerce technology and operations, enabling brands and retailers to profitably exceed retail customer expectations. Radial’s technical, powerful omnichannel solutions connect supply and demand through efficient fulfillment and transportation options, intelligent fraud detection, payments, and tax systems, and personalized customer care services. Hundreds of retailers and brands confidently partner with Radial to simplify their post-click commerce and improve their customer experiences. Radial brings flexibility and scalability to their supply chains and optimizes how, when and where orders go from desire to delivery. Learn how we work with you at