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Key International, Eco and Luxury shopping trends in 2018

By Chris Dawson December 5, 2018 - 10:30 am

new research from MetaPack which examines key shopping trends and consumer delivery preferences in 2018. Today we look at International, Eco and Luxury shopping trends.

International shopping is now mainstream for half of all users surveyed and they are starting to care about environmental issues associated with their deliveries. For luxury brands it’s all about the experience and an economy delivery just won’t cut it when retailers are spending large sums of money online.

Shopping across borders

International ecommerce has never been so popular, with shrewd consumers taking advantage of currency fluctuations to secure great deals on overseas brands. Retailers must ensure they can step up to the demands that shoppers make for superior cross-border services, including transparency over delivery costs.

  • 49% of this year’s respondents had made between one and five overseas purchases
  • The top barriers to cross-border shopping are expensive delivery (45%), slow delivery (28%) and having to pay for delivery (25%)
  • North American shoppers are most diligent about extra charges with 83% of US and 80% of Canadian consumers checking if these will be applied to the goods they order, but French (43%), German (38%) and Dutch (38%) are most likely to abandon their basket if there is an unexpected charge for taxes

Why customers come back again and again

Research this year demonstrates that delivery loyalty programmes are proving to hold strong consumer appeal.

  • Nearly half (49%) said that they would prioritise one ecommerce provider over another because of its loyalty programme, and 65% would be interested in a loyalty programme where multiple brands and retailers worked together to offer a premium delivery service with 73% of Spanish and 74% of US consumers favouring the idea
  • 25% of shoppers are planning to join a delivery loyalty programme in the coming year

Eco-conscious delivery is on the rise

Green issues are becoming more prevalent amongst consumers and the impact of online deliveries on the environment is not going unnoticed. Retailers can offer real differentiation if they provide eco-friendly delivery options such as consolidated delivery.

  • 26% care a great deal about how their online deliveries are contributing to increased carbon emissions and traffic congestion. US consumers (41%) in particular cited this as a concern
  • The number of consumers that are conscious of the issue is rising, from 47% in 2017 up to 51% this year, most notably in France (62%), the Netherlands (60%) and Germany (56%)
  • When asked why they preferred a consolidated delivery option, i.e. having all their items delivered at once, over a third (35%) said it was because multiple deliveries made them concerned about the environment

Luxury Shopping trends

Luxury brands are grasping the online opportunity and satisfying the aspirations of digital consumers. This means differentiating their delivery options and providing a premium delivery experience, whether that’s offering a two-hour delivery option or a same-day concierge service.

  • US shoppers were the most likely to engage with luxury brands online with 91% making online purchases in the last 12 month
  • Spanish (89%), French (88%) and German (86%) are also enthusiastic luxury brand purchasers, but in the UK this number drops to 76% and even lower for consumers in the Netherlands at 40%

Carrier control

Given that consumers want choice in all aspects of their online purchasing experience, it makes sense that this now extends to being able to choose the carrier that is entrusted to deliver their goods.

  • 41% of shoppers said the freedom to choose a last-mile carrier is very or somewhat important to them. This was extremely important to US (31%) shoppers, but less so for the Netherlands (5%) and UK (11%).

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