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Survey ranks price as key motivation for shopping online

22 March 2013 - 09:15 by Graham Miller

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The majority of consumers across the world choose to carry out safe shopping online because of the bargain prices offered by e-commerce outlets, according to a new study from owner, Rakuten.

Sixty one per cent of respondents to the survey cited this as being the most important factor when picking a place to buy products online.

Forty nine per cent said that the reliability of a retailer was also something they weighed up before passing through the checkout process.

Forty per cent of those questioned argued that being given a good degree of choice was an important asset to any online retail experience.

Interestingly it was this choice-factor that actually appealed to more people in the UK than elsewhere, perhaps as a result of our relative affluence making considerations of price less pressing.

Survey spokesperson, Adam Stewart, said that while some online retailers were fighting it out on price alone, consumers were not solely swayed by this and would want to see a combination of benefits in a particular e-commerce outlet.

Stewart also argued that there are other things people consider to be important, such as the ability to carry out safe shopping online, in an environment which is able to offer good levels of security.

Consumers also value e-commerce experiences if they are intuitive and entertaining, so retailers should not compete on price alone.

This is all about building up online brands that consumers can recognise and respect, according to Stewart. Companies which are not only known for their affordable prices, but their general reliability and security, will be in a better position to succeed in the long term.

The biggest brands, like Amazon and, can rely on loyal customers to come back time and again, which is something that smaller retailers should aspire to achieve.