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Study finds online retailers still struggle to satisfy consumers

02 October 2014 - 09:01 by Graham Miller

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A survey conducted by Cognizant has revealed that while shopping online is still growing across Europe, e-commerce retailers need to do more to make the buying experience more intuitive and cohesive, if they want to increase sales, according to ComputerWorldUK.

Just over half of those questioned said that they have used a smartphone or tablet to shop online, with only 45 per cent of this m-commerce savvy segment of the population admitting that they had a satisfactory experience when making a purchase from a portable device.

There is still a gap between the number of people who carry out product searches from their mobiles (78 per cent) and those who are actually willing to go the whole hog and actually buy something from an m-commerce site. And the biggest barrier seems to be the lack of interoperability that exists in this area.

Consumers want to be able to search for a product on their smartphone or tablet, add it to their shopping basket with the retailer of their choice and then go through with the transaction once they get to a desktop or laptop computer. But too often there is some obstacle preventing them from following through on this process, which is where sales are being lost.

While 86 per cent of respondents said that they often harness social networking services, 63 per cent claimed they prefer retailers to steer clear of using these outlets to promote products and services.

The tools with which consumers can shop online are expanding all the time, with sites like Facebook and Twitter rallying to rake in cash from users who might want to do more than just communicate with friends. But companies have to be careful that their advances are not so significant that they put off customers altogether.