Mirakl, the industry's first and most advanced enterprise marketplace SaaS platform, today released its annual consumer data report, Consumer Preferences in the Digital-First Economy. This second edition of the report surveyed 9,600 global consumers regarding their preferences and habits when shopping both in-person and online. According to the findings, a clear majority (86%) of U.S. consumers say inflation has made them look for better value when shopping. As a result, 71% expect to move more of their spending online in the next 12 months to find better value. The data reveals the urgent need for consumer-facing businesses to focus on providing more products at competitive price points to maintain customer loyalty.
Value shoppers prioritize the best deal over brand loyalty
New economic pressures are causing brands' most loyal customers to reconsider their alliances in favor of finding better prices. According to the Mirakl survey, more than four in 10 (43%) survey respondents globally stopped shopping with a specific retailer as a result of rising prices. Fewer than 1 in 5 respondents (17%) continue to shop with the brands they trust regardless of price, putting pressure on brands that rely on loyalty from high-value customers to take agile approaches to product and pricing strategy in order to ensure growth.
"Consumer expectations are increasing even as the game becomes harder for retailers," said Adrien Nussenbaum, co-founder and co-CEO of Mirakl. "The data clearly shows that shoppers have a renewed focus on price and convenience, and only a small fraction of customers are unconditionally loyal to their favorite brands as prices skyrocket. In this economic environment, consumers are relying more than ever on marketplaces to provide the experience that they expect, intensifying pressure for every retailer to develop a clear marketplace strategy. There is a clear mandate for retailers to offer everything from expanded assortments and more affordable price points to better shipping options – without compromising on a strong brand experience. Business leaders must make shrewd strategic decisions today in order to come out ahead."
Consumers turn to eCommerce for value, reliability and convenience
While consumers continue to shop in-store, they are also increasing eCommerce spending due to lower prices and a better customer experience. Nearly three-quarters (71%) of U.S. respondents expect to increase their eCommerce spending over the next 12 months as a result of finding better value online, pushing omnichannel businesses to double down on eCommerce investments to protect the bottom line.
Globally, consumers are also finding eCommerce channels to be more reliable in terms of product availability. More than half (53%) of U.S. consumers agree that the products they need have been out of stock more frequently in stores in the last six months. These short-term out-of-stock challenges are yet another contributor to long-term behavioral shifts in favor of eCommerce. When a product they normally purchase in store is out of stock, half (52%) of shoppers try to find it online often or very often. If they find what they're looking for, nearly three-quarters (71%) shop for it online the next time they need it.
Other key findings of the report include:
- Online shopping becomes a defining habit for today's consumer: Roughly half (51%) of global respondents are likely or very likely to do the majority of their shopping online in 2023;
- Spending on online marketplaces continues to rise: U.S. consumers conducted 46% of their online shopping through marketplaces, a 10% year-over-year increase from 2021;
- Online shoppers find marketplaces to be more convenient than the competition: More than three-quarters (77%) of consumers globally continue to believe marketplaces are the most convenient way to shop online, a 10% increase year-over-year. Three in five (60%) wish more of their favorite retailers had online marketplaces; and,
- Consumers seek new features in the "marketplaces of the future": Global survey respondents cited loyalty and membership programs (41%); in-store pop-ups that show marketplace products in person (28%); purchasing integration with the latest social media apps (20%); and a handpicked selection from influencers they follow (19%) as the features they'd most like to see in future online marketplaces.
Consumer Preferences in the Digital-First Economy, the newest iteration of The State of Online Marketplace Adoption by Mirakl, is available for download at: https://info.mirakl.com/us-consumer-survey-january-2023.