Indians browse e-commerce sites before buying goods: Survey


New Delhi: A growing number of Indian consumers are turning to their mobile devices to check prices of products while shopping in brick-and-mortar stores, indicating a rise in the adoption of omnichannel retail behaviour. 

“For five in 10 India consumers, e-commerce websites and search engines are the top sources of pre-purchase information, while three in 10 check in with their family, friends and colleagues before deciding on a purchase. For nearly four out of 10 India consumers, traditional TV and sponsored social media advertisements influence a purchase decision,” according to India specific June findings of PWC’s Global Consumer Insights Pulse Survey.

Globally, consumers typically rely on search engines and retailer websites to access pre-purchase information, with 54% of consumers relying on search engines to derive product information and 55%, on retailer websites. In India, however, a large e-commerce platform or marketplace is the go-to source for product information, with an estimated 60% of Indian consumers using such platforms for research; globally, the number rests at 35%.

Retailer websites figure low on the list, with only 21% of Indians frequenting them before making a purchase decision and another 28% using them to read product reviews. At least 30% of buyers in India, and the same percentage globally, seek the opinion of friends, family and colleagues before making a purchase, according to the survey findings.

Meanwhile, 29% of consumers surveyed in India and 31% globally also social media to research a product before purchasing it.

Around 66% of consumers in India—much higher than the global figure of 56%—almost always or frequently use their smartphone to research a product online for competitive prices, special offers and availability.

However, despite the popularity of the convenience of buying products online, in-store retail experience trumps online shopping, the survey said. In fact, in the last 12 months, 49% of consumers in India and 41% of consumers globally preferred to shop for items such as clothes, books and electronics from a physical store.

Consumers are not willing to trade the experience of in-store shopping for online shopping, convenient as it may be. Both globally and in India, people prefer to shop at physical stores.

Interestingly, Indian consumers said they still get swayed by traditional television commercials.

“While global consumers said direct promotional advertisements were the most influential in making a purchase decision, India consumers still lean towards traditional TV ads. About 40% said TV ads influenced their purchase decision compared with 35% globally,” the survey revealed. A large number of Indian shoppers (31%) continue to be influenced by ads featuring famous celebrities or influencers.

The survey also gauged consumer intent towards direct-to-consumer brands that have emerged in the last few years. In India, 65% of consumers have purchased products directly from a brand’s website, with products related to food and beverage (38%), and clothing and accessories (37%) being the top picks. Millennials lead such experimentation with direct-to-consumer brands, the survey said.

The Global Consumer Insights Survey is a biannual study that seeks to keep a closer watch on changing consumer trends. For the June 2023 Pulse survey, a total of 501 respondents were polled from India.

Catch all the Industry News, Banking News and Updates on Live Mint.
Download The Mint News App to get Daily Market Updates.


Updated: 21 Aug 2023, 01:18 PM IST

Leave A Reply