Global baby boom the root cause for multichannel expectations increasing?

23rd Feb 2015

Rarely do you find a parent who couldn’t be described as being time-pressed.

However, according to Dunnhumby research, there is a new breed of hard-pressed, time-poor parent emerging across the globe – and they are one that has become more expectant and reliant on multichannel shopping to relieve some of the burden of their hectic lives.

The computer science company and loyalty programme pioneer analysed the grocery buying habits of seven million people in 14 countries in Europe, Asia and the Americas to discover that parents from emerging and established markets alike are becoming more expectant on retailers providing a joined up online and in-store experience, in order to be able to fit their shopping requirements around the rest of their lives.

Emerging markets are experiencing the most rapid uptake in multichannel shopper, with Dunnhumby’s data stating that markets, such as China and Poland, and new markets, including Thailand and Brazil, were experiencing 97% and 89% year-on-year growth respectively.

In more established ecommerce markets such as the UK and South Korea, the figure was still high, however, with growth of multichannel shopping at more than 30%.  

The vast majority of online shoppers are multichannel consumers, with less than 1% of the population shopping online only.

“Across the globe, there’s a marked increase in multichannel grocery shopping,” says Julian Highley, global director of customer knowledge at Dunnhumby.

“Growth in multichannel is particularly strong among time and sleep starved parents, who benefit most from being able to shop any time, without leaving the home. Baby food and care products not only appear in the top three categories, but these are clearly important gateway products for new online shoppers.

“However, the belief that a rising tide lifts all boats clearly doesn’t apply in multichannel – success is far from guaranteed. Instead, understanding the path to purchase online – as well as online shopping missions – is key to brands succeeding.”

The report also shows that not all brands are benefiting equally from the growth of multichannel, with many experiencing a decline in their online performance.

The research states this variation is the result of online performance being determined by how well brands understand and respond to the path to purchase in their category. This is backed up by statistics from the Baymard Institute that estimate around 67% of online shoppers abandon carts before purchase.

Further statistics from PPRO Group suggest that UK retailers may also be losing up to 42% of international revenue at payment pages, due to the poor path to purchase they provide for their customers.

Despite a soaring global population that recently surpassed 7bn, statistics state the global baby boom has actually slowed in the last three years, however this has seemingly had little effect on the consumer expectations Dunnhumby alludes to in its research.  

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