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Impact of GDPR on e-commerce activity revealed

05 August 2019 - 14:06 by Graham Miller

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The number of people enjoying safe shopping online has apparently been adversely impacted, following the rollout of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) last year, according to a research paper cited by Econsultancy.

Academic analysts revealed that both the number of people visiting sites and the number of pages being viewed during these visits were down by around a tenth in the period since GDPR first came into effect.

This meant that sites specifically focused upon providing e-commerce services saw a smaller yet no less significant reduction in visitor numbers of 8.3 per cent.

Experts believe that this means that, on average, sites were making $8000 less than they were before GDPR arrived, although for the largest retailers out there this will clearly be significantly higher.

There are a number of factors at play here, with experts arguing that one of the reasons that site visits are down is that advertising has been hampered by reduced access to customer data.

In addition, it is thought that browsing habits have been affected because all sites are now required to ask visitors for permission to use cookies and record their information.

It could be argued that GDPR has essentially been a success, with these figures supporting the idea that it has made consumers more aware as to how their information is being harvested as they browse the internet. Giving people the choice to reject advertising cookies and other forms of tracking software means that there is rather more thought going into the trustworthiness and reputation of sites.

Of course for businesses, any reduction in revenue is far from ideal and GDPR appears to be presenting retailers, in particular, with additional challenges in the context of attracting new customers as well as securing the loyalty of existing shoppers.