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E-commerce dominance predicted by study

01 June 2016 - 11:28 by Graham Miller

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A survey by BBC Radio 4 has found that three quarters of consumers in the UK believe that by the year 2026 they will carry out the majority of their retail purchases via safe shopping online.

Almost two thirds of those questioned also claimed that the shape of the nation’s high street marketplace will be very different in a decade’s time. Eighty per cent also said that every retailer will need to offer customers the option to buy online, or else face slipping into irrelevance.

95 per cent of people with internet access have made an online purchase in the past half-year, with close to one in two people using an e-commerce site to place an order more than once a month. This includes both physical and digital products, thus factoring in services like iTunes, as well as sites like the one operated by Amazon.

Report spokesperson, Alistair Lockhart, explained that while retailers are still adapting to the demands placed on them by modern consumers, people are only becoming more attached to technology. This means that companies must offer compelling experiences via safe shopping online and at bricks and mortar outlets, to ensure sales growth is achievable.

57 per cent of respondents to the report, which was conducted by Savvy Marketing, said that being able to return items with ease was a big selling point of e-commerce services. Twenty four per cent said that seeing posts on social media sites made them more likely to buy products online, while a fifth have gained inspiration from videos posted to services like YouTube and used this to inform their shopping stints.

59 per cent said that they had cut down on the number of visits made to real world stores as a direct response to the rise of e-commerce, indicating that predictions about the dominance of online shopping could ring true.