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Social Commerce Insights

New Digitas LBI study emphasises the relevance of recommendations

Digitas LBI, an online marketing and technology agency headquartered in Boston/USA, has published a new study on consumer behavior – and it’s full of useful insights for people who are engaged in Social Commerce: Focussing on a) how consumers make their purchase decisions, b) how many of them expect delivery within one day and c) if they take trust into a sales advisers expertise, Digitas LBI was able to figure out some national characteristics and patterns consumers from across the world have in common.


Three out of four consumers always look for other users’ opinions and comments online before purchase

Recommendations have a heavy impact on most consumers’ purchase decisions across the globe. According to the latest Digitas LBI study, an average of 77.49 percent consumers is always actively looking for other consumers’ experiences before purchasing a specific product. Specially consumers from Asia and Southern-Europe focus strongly on recommendations: Not less than 94.5 percent of all interviewed Chinese consumers and 89.3 online shoppers from Hong Kong claimed that they look for other users’ opinion before every purchase. On rank number three is India (88.6 percent) and on rank four Singapore (88.1), followed by Italy and Spain with 83.6 respectively 82.0 percent. In the bottom positions are Sweden and Denmark – with still 65.1 respectively 60.7 percent of all consumers who always make their purchase decisions based on the opinion of other consumers.


Recommendations of friends and family are less important

The tips and recommendations of friends and family are – surprisingly – less important than the experiences of unfamiliar consumers: On average only 35.32 percent of all interviewed consumers consult friends and family before purchasing. While 43.8 percent of all German and 41.8 percent of all Belgium consumers make their purchase decision based on their mates’ advice, not more than 30.8 percent of all Swedish and 22.3 percent of all Italian consumers get usually influenced by their family and friends. Consumers from the United Kingdom (36.8 percent), India (36.0 percent) and France (34.7 percent) show average values in this area.


Most consumers don’t value the expertise of bricks-and-mortar store staff 

When talking about the future of their companies managers of traditional stores often name personal one-to-one advice as a strength, but this could be an error: According to Digitas LBI, 90.45 percent of all consumers across the world don’t value the sales advisers’ expertise. Particularly many consumers from Liberia (94.7 percent), Hong Kong (94.3 percent) China (93.3 percent) and New Zealand (93.1 percent) don’t identify the sales advisers’ expertise as the key benefit of shopping online while European consumers seem to be more “traditional”: In Switzerland 18.6 percent of all consumers value the expertise of bricks-and-mortar store staff, in France 15.0 percent, in Belgium 13.3 percent and in Germany at least 12.6 percent.


Most consumers are willing to wait for the delivery

Same-day- and instant-delivery have been one of the most discussed topics in Europe for a while as not only Amazon but also smaller players such as the German technology shop Notebooksbilliger.de are currently about to improve their service by delivering goods much quicker than usual, on the same day or even within only one hour. But as it seems consumers aren’t as impatient as retailers think. On average only every sixth consumer (18.02 percent) expects delivery within one day. While Dutch (38.3 percent) and Indian (29.8 percent) are the most impatient nations consumers from other countries are more relaxed: Not more than 15.4 percent of all British, 14.8 percent of all French, 13.2 percent of all German, 11.2 percent of all Swedish and 6.5 percent of all Swiss consumers interviewed by Digitas LBI expect delivery within one day. So services like “Amazon Prime” and “Amazon Prime Now” appear more as a gimmick than as a plus consumers are really waiting for.