Report: Consumers going online for research prior to buying
Chicago A report released Monday by The E-tailing Group and PowerReviews found that online research remains central to consumer shopping behavior.
According to the 2010 Social Shopping Study, 50% of consumers say they conduct research online for at least half of the purchases made (compared with 54% in 2007).
The survey, which queried over 1,000 consumers who shop at least four times per year and spend $250 or more annually shopping online, focused on two key areas: how, when and why consumers are conducting online product research as well as their behaviors, and expectations related to customer reviews.
Twenty-nine percent of those surveyed conduct just a few hours of research prior to making a purchase decision, while 60% conduct research for a week or more.
Just 11% conduct research for just a day.
The study also found that people strongly prefer to do their own research online versus speaking to a knowledgeable sales associate in-store. According to respondents, online research is preferred for three reasons: its ability to save time (79% report saving somewhat to much more time doing their own online research); increased confidence (83% are somewhat to much more confident about making a purchase decision when doing their own research); and credible information (82% are somewhat or very satisfied with product information available online).
Other key findings included: 57% of shoppers begin their online research with a search engine; the top three places consumers named for finding information online when researching products were retailer sites (65%), brand sites (58%) and Amazon.com (33%).
Social Media sites (Facebook, Twitter) ranked as the place where consumers were least likely (6%) to research.
When surveyed about the tools available for online research, customer reviews were ranked as the No. 1 social-media tool having a positive to significant impact on buying behavior.
Following poor product content (72%), lack of customer reviews (49%) was ranked as the number one reason a consumer would leave a site when conducting product research.
Target among top brands
Target landed at number 62 on the fifth annual BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands report from Millward Brown Optimor, an operating company of WPP. When the list of 100 is filtered to isolate retailers only, Target ranked fifth behind top-ranked Walmart, Amazon, Tesco and Carrefour. After Target, other retailers rounding out the top 10 included Ebay, Home Depot, Aldi, Auchan and Lowe’s.
“The BrandZ Top 100 is the only ranking based on a brand valuation methodology that is grounded in both quantitative customer research and in-depth financial analysis,” according to the report. The firm says the ranking is exceptionally robust due to the fact that, in addition to publicly available financial data, it draws from WPP’s unique BrandZ data base.”
Kanakaredes helps Hanes fight breast cancer
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. Hanes announced that for the second year, it will offer a special “pink collection” of panties, bras, socks, and graphic tees — including three t-shirts exclusively designed by Melina Kanakaredes, to help raise breast cancer awareness. Select items from the The Hanes “pink collection” have already begun rolling out in stores, including Hanes socks available at Walmart, the company reported. This fall, the entire collection including Kanakaredes’ tees will be available on Hanes.com and in select stores.
“I am thrilled to join Hanes and Susan G. Komen for the Cure to raise funds and awareness about breast cancer,” Kanakaredes said. “Like so many, I have been affected by the disease through the loss of family members and dear friends. I was inspired to join this fight to celebrate survivors and to honor the memory of those we have lost, and it is my sincere hope that my inspiration is evident in the Hanes t-shirts I have designed.”
Kanakeredes will also be featured in a series of Susan G. Komen for the Cure public service announcements dedicated to breast cancer awareness. Starting in October for National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Kanakaredes will support the cause in a new Hanes print advertising campaign created by The Martin Agency of Richmond, Va.
Hanes announced that it has also been named the official t-shirt of the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure Series. Hanes t-shirts will be provided to the 1.5 million people expected to participate in the race series. In addition, the company will serve as the official apparel sponsor of Passionately Pink for the Cure, a fundraising program created by Komen to inspire breast cancer advocacy and honor those affected by the disease.