Ecommerce Relevance Report: Coveo

Coveo survey shows that 93% of 4,000 consumers expect the online shopping experience to be better than in-store yet 91% encounter a range of problems that may impact trust and brand loyalty

Coveo (TSX:CVO), a leader in AI platforms that transform digital experiences with intelligent search, recommendations, 1:1 personalization, and merchandising, today announced its third annual Ecommerce Relevance Report with insights based on a survey of 4,000 shoppers in the U.S. and U.K. The report reflects how the current economy and affordability of products is changing consumer behavior. It also shows that shoppers are wary of their privacy, but willing to share more data about themselves if it means they will get a better deal, or personalized offer.

The report also confirms that commerce sites continue to have problems that create discontent,impacting brand loyalty and trust.

“Shoppers expect their online experiences to be equal or better than in-store, yet many brands are not meeting these expectations,” said Brian McGlynn, General Manager of Commerce Solutions, Coveo. “Consumers also prefer anonymity, which is a challenge for retailers who don’t have the trust of their consumers. We found that there are economy-driven generational differences when it comes to brand loyalty and the shift towards private label products. But building trust is a key differentiator for building loyalty, and a great experience with your brand can still make a positive impact on that trust.”

Some of the key trends observed in Coveo’s latest consumer survey data include:

  • Shoppers prefer anonymity. With the demise of the third-party cookie, Coveo asked shoppers their views on giving personal information. Nearly half (48%) said that they have abandoned an online purchase when asked to create an account and 32% state they always checkout as a guest. More than half of respondents (57%) are also unaware of how much data they share when shopping online, a percentage that stays about the same across generations. But consumers don’t seem overly concerned about it when they get something in return — 52% said that they are willing to share data when shopping online if it means they get better deals and offers. In other words, retailers need to make it worth their while to share that data.
  • Affordability is a factor in consumer shopping behavior: A majority of respondents (83%) said they are relying on more affordable stores or buying more private-store-label products, indicating that brand loyalty may be at risk. Baby Boomers are most likely to be loyal to brands and stores. Consumers in the U.K. are less brand loyal and even more likely to buy private products than their U.S. counterparts (42% and 37% respectively), while younger groups are more likely to shop at more affordable stores than older generations.
  • Most consumers expect online shopping to be better than in-person shopping. As retailers try to satisfy online retail expectations, shoppers resoundingly say they often encounter problems in the digital world. Most respondents (93%) expect their online shopping experience to be better than/equal to what they receive while in-store. Most (91%) said they encounter problems online, with nearly a third citing poor site performance (33%) and lack of findability (32%) as the top issues, followed by missing product information (27%), disorganized navigation (26%), not being mobile friendly (25%), and too many irrelevant recommendations (24%). If we look at only the digitally native Gen Z, 96% report encountering problems. They are 46% more likely to be frustrated by lack of product discovery, nearly 13% more likely to be upset that they can’t discover new products, and 11% more aggravated that the site doesn’t allow filtering.
  • Online shopping and in-person shopping are linked. Shoppers show a strong preference for researching products before purchasing, with 79% saying that they conduct research online and on social media. That includes research on a brand’s website, with 37% researching products online and purchasing in-store. However, 22% of shoppers complain that they don’t know if stock is available at their local store.

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