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Creative marketing required for e-commerce success, study finds

08 July 2011 - 10:57 by Graham Miller

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A study has concluded that e-commerce firms need to be imaginative with the ways in which they promote their products and services, if they want to get customers to commit to purchases.

Analyst firm Mintel has found that people who shop on the high street are not buying products on an impulse and in such large numbers as they have done in the past, which means that safe shopping online should be able to take up some of this slack, provided it can present itself in the correct way.

It seems that the best method for getting consumers to buy fashion items and accessories on a whim is to let them order well into the evening hours and still expect to get the product delivered to their doors the next day.

In the past, next day delivery was limited to people ordering before 12pm but as e-commerce has expanded this has gradually crept later and later.

According to Mintel's Michelle Strutton, the key time deadline which online retailers should target is 9pm, giving consumers a chance to enjoy safe shopping online after they get in from work without having to then wait two or three days to take delivery of their orders.

In addition to looking at how order deadline shifting can improve sales, the study found that certain groups of consumers prefer online shopping to the high street because of their specific situations.

New mothers are particularly keen on e-commerce because they feel that the high street brands do not have enough of a range of clothing to accommodate those who are just coming out of a pregnancy.

Forty-nine per cent of women who were questioned as part of the study said that they avoided many high street outlets in favour of online shopping because clothing ranges tend to be aimed at those much younger than they are.