LONDON, November 21, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --
Intersperience Survey Forecasts Backlash Against Online Retailers
- Drop in numbers who trust internet retailers to deliver on time
- 53% say economy worries will affect their spending overall
- Kindle and e-readers most popular technology gift
Four out of 10 of shoppers who refuse to buy Christmas gifts online this year fear a repeat of last year's delivery fiasco when one in six presents bought from websites failed to turn up on time, according to new consumer research.
The Intersperience Christmas Shopping Survey 2011 also showed that 36% of consumers who are not prepared to buy online are concerned about the risk of receiving the wrong item following problems in 2010 when one in ten people received incorrect items or something they had not expected.
Paul Hudson, Intersperience Chief Executive, said: "There is a general disappointment with online service that is a hangover from last year and it is affecting people's plans for Christmas. Retailers need to do a lot of work to win back customers' trust in online shopping."
Despite these concerns, overall UK online sales are expected to continue growing. However, Intersperience has identified a marked shift in sentiment away from web-based shopping.
Although 81% of the population said they expect to buy something online this year, that is well down on the 89% who had planned an internet Christmas in 2010. However, there is still a big appetite for smooth and reliable web-based shopping and 20% of consumers said they would have spent more online last year had it not been for experiencing frustrations with ordering and delivery.
Paul Hudson said: "While a lot of people had good experiences of online shopping last year, a large proportion had problems and this has put off a significant minority of shoppers. There is no doubt that internet retailing will show year-on-year growth, as it is coming from a relatively low base, but the more general question is whether online sales are actually falling short of what they should be if service was better.
"Quite simply, online stores have to get their act together this year and outperform to win back a sceptical public. If they do, they will pick up significant market share but, if there is a rerun of 2010, then the big winners are likely to be supermarkets and high street stores."
In general, the Intersperience Christmas Shopping Survey found consumers are gearing up to spend an average of £307 per head, an increase of £7 compared to the forecast for 2010. The overall increase is despite 53% of shoppers expressing concern about the economic climate, up 8% on last year, and four out of ten saying they will have less money to spend.
Consumers over the age of 25, who were most cautious about their spending intentions in 2010, appear to have loosened the purse strings and are planning to spend £25 per head more than 12 months ago. Meanwhile those under 25, who were more bullish last year, intend to spend £4 less in 2011.
Another striking feature of consumers' intentions this year is a big move to start shopping earlier in the hope of seeking out bargains in pre-Christmas sales.
The most sought-after electronic gadget this year according to the survey is a Kindle - one in four people who plan to buy technology said they will be snapping up one or similar e-book reader, pushing last year's must-have gadget, the iPad, into sixth place.
NOTES TO EDITORS
About the Intersperience Christmas Shopping Survey:
Intersperience conducted a comprehensive survey of 1,000 shoppers in the UK on their spending plans and shopping habits in the run-up to Christmas. The survey used quantitative and qualitative research methods to predict shopping behaviour and includes consumers' views on the impact of economic conditions and favourite gifts for this year. It includes data on the impact of internet shopping on consumers and analysis of differences in the behaviour and preferences of consumers aged 18-24 and those aged 25 and above.
See the latest news section on http://www.intersperience.com for a Q&A with Intersperience Chief Executive Paul Hudson on this survey.
Intersperience is an international consumer research specialist with expertise in consumer behaviour, experience and attitudes. The team, which is headquartered in Cumbria, has more than 25 years experience in analysing consumer behaviour. It employs a range of interpretative models and frameworks including a proprietary online research platform. Intersperience has significant global expertise and an international research hub at Lancaster University which conducts research in more than 60 languages as well as associates in major global markets. Intersperience is an expert in how technology impacts on consumer behaviour and multi-channel customer service strategy. Clients include: The British Council; General Motors; Iceland; Samsung; ScottishPower; and William Hill.
For more information About Intersperience: Tel: +44(0)15395-65450