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Consumers Confounded by Choice in Online Space

10 February 2020 - 13:37 by David Aiken

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A new report from Zoovu has shown that people carrying out safe shopping online can be overwhelmed by the sheer number of options that are available to them, with over half of respondents admitting that they had given up on a potential purchase because they did not know which site to use.

A similar proportion said that they had also stumbled across issues when trying to pinpoint specific products on sites, suggesting that retailers need to do more to optimise their search services to avoid such situations.

71 per cent of those questioned said that they had even changed allegiances and used a rival shopping site to buy items when they found it too difficult to look up their desired products on an e-commerce outlet that they normally frequented.

54 per cent said that if they had access to an AI assistant while shopping online they would be more likely to stick with the site in question rather than heading elsewhere. As such, it seems that a degree of guidance, or at least the knowledge that instant support is available when needed, is enough to instil confidence in modern consumers.

64 per cent said that they would rather ask a chat bot to direct them to a product than rely on it being offered up as part of a related search or provided in the ‘similar products’ section when visiting the checkout.

Being overloaded by choice is of course another matter and one which is trickier to tackle, leading to people feeling unable to come to a decision. In order to deal with this, retailers must make sure that the user experience available via their websites is not so overwhelming or cluttered as to leave prospective shoppers unable to work out what they should buy.