The average amount spent online also rose to 198% year over year.
Physical stores are reopening on UK’s high streets, and business owners are poised to make necessary adaptations to ensure continued patronage. Browser testing platform LambdaTest published the first in a series of data-driven reports after conducting analysis and research on consumer expectations both in e-commerce and physical stores.
After LambdaTest carried out a broad-based survey of UK consumers, online purchases were reported to have surged within the first year of the pandemic. However, the company warned that it would be an illusion to think this would be a permanent future e-commerce trend.
The Growth of UK’s Ecommerce Industry During the Pandemic
The number of people using the internet for their everyday purchases has increased to 233%, raising the percentage of online shoppers to 77% from 33% in the past year. The average amount spent online also rose to 198% year over year. Last year, Brits spent £384 monthly on online purchases (excluding rent/mortgage and household bills), an amount that has doubled to £761 per month within a year.
LambdaTest CEO and co-founder Asad Khan confirmed this during a recent interview where he stated that “retailers with an online presence have been riding an incredible wave over the last year. They’ve overcome some enormous challenges to make their online presences as great as possible in extraordinary, tough circumstances.”
Uncertainty Around the Huge Growth of the Ecommerce Industry
Survey data suggests that brands should prepare for a considerable drop in online purchases after the pandemic. 70% of the people surveyed increased their online spending in the last year due to the pandemic while a remarkably close number, 68%, plan to reduce their online shopping immediately after the pandemic passes. This highlights the fact that COVID-19’s effect on e-commerce is temporary.
Khan also added that brands now have a new challenge ahead as physical retail competition returns. He emphasized the need for brands to focus on delivering quality services and improving their user experience online to retain customers. He said: “Retailers need to invest in their online user experience and deliver a consistently incredible online service. Consumers are fickle and are flooded with choice. Poor websites will drive customers away, and they don’t come back.”
According to the report, 51% of the respondents said a negative online shopping experience would stop them from using the same website in the future. 63% also say that they have trouble speaking with customer service representatives.
Furthermore, only 55% of the respondents considered themselves loyal to an admired online brand compared to a physical one. 65% of the respondents typically shop around for the best online offers, while 54% visit at least four stores for the best deal.
Khan concluded that the reality is that consumers do not treat online and physical purchases in the same way. Therefore, it is highly important that retailers provide their customers with a high-quality online experience to keep them coming back. Retailers typically assume that consumers treat online and physical purchases the same way but about 67% of consumers don’t treat them the same. Hence, the best retailers focus on creating the best online experiences for their customers to keep them coming back.
A Word About LambdaTest
LambdaTest reviews users’ website and web app quality globally in real-time on over 2,000 browsers and operating systems via its cloud-based web testing platform. It detects bugs and issues that clients can resolve in a few hours, enabling their online platforms to deliver at an optimal speed and quality on all browsers and devices. Since its 2018 launch, LambdaTest has run 12 million tests for over 400,000 users in 138 countries.