Nearly 70 percent of online shoppers use Amazon to compare products found on a brand’s website

  •   August 21, 2019

A new survey from Episerver discovered 24 percent of online shoppers always compare what they find on a brand or retail website to available products on Amazon, with 44 percent often doing the same — making a total of 68 percent who are either always or often cross-referencing products on Amazon.

Meanwhile, only 17 percent of the online shoppers said the primary reason they visited a brand’s website for the first time was to make a purchase. For most, the primary reason they visited a brand website was to search for a product or compare prices between brands.

The “Reimagining Commerce” report surveyed more than 4,500 global online shoppers to gather online retail insights, including where consumers began their search for products, the online services they want most in an e-commerce site, the role social plays in online shopping, and more.

Where the online shopping journey begins. It doesn’t matter if an online shopper already has a product in mind or if they are simply browsing for inspiration — most begin their online shopping journey on a marketplace like Amazon.

For shoppers with a specific product in mind, 46 percent start the process on a marketplace — as do 39 percent of shoppers who are simply browsing. (The survey found 75 percent of shoppers claimed either all or many of their online purchases were pre-planned). If they are not starting their online shopping experience on a site like Amazon, then online shoppers are most likely turning to Google. Only 34 percent of online shoppers (both those with a product in mind and those who are browsing), begin by visiting a brand or retailer’s website.

Social’s role in online shopping. Only 13 percent of online shoppers turn to social media when beginning the online shopping journey, according to the survey, and only 21% of the survey respondents said they have made a purchase directly from a social media ad. Even fewer — 16 percent — claimed to have made a purchase directly from an influencer’s product post.

What online shoppers want. Not only are a majority of online shoppers checking out Amazon after finding a product on a brand’s website, 61% said they prefer online marketplaces because of price options, and 58% because of product selections.

The top three services online shoppers want when making purchases online: free shipping (67 percent), shipping tracking (61 percent) and information about returns (52 percent). Seventy-seven percent of the survey participants said incorrect or incomplete content on a brand’s website either always or often dissuades them from completing a purchase.

“Regardless of where shoppers choose to engage a company, they should be able to trust the accuracy and completeness of the information they find,” writes Episerver.

Why you should care. To remain competitive as an e-commerce brand and fight for market share against marketplace giants like Amazon, marketers must have an in-depth understanding of how consumers begin and end their online shopping journey.

After seeing a record $126 billion spent online during this past holiday season, there is no question consumers want to buy products from their desktop and mobile devices. The brands that will win are the ones who can provide the most convenient and seamless shopping experience, capturing online shoppers when they start browsing and successfully leading them to the buy button.