Christmas spending hits high, but consumers still peeved
Tuesday, January 11 2010 by Steve Swallow
New research has confirmed that 44 per cent of Britain's online adult population had boosted their online spending this Christmas when compared to 2009, in effect reaching a record high.
The concentrated campaigns revolving around managed emarketing and website promotion, Tealeaf reported, pushed the total amount spent online to £2.8 billion during the Christmas period, with convenience (58 per cent of respondents), stress reduction (52 per cent) and cheaper prices (52 per cent) cited as the top reasons for doing more shopping on the web.
Despite this, technical problems undermined the efforts offered by company experts and internet marketing consultants, as many websites "failed to live up to this increased ecommerce appetite".
Tealeaf found that 45 per cent of online shoppers encountered issues over the holiday season, while a third totally abandoned their internet transactions at the basket stage.
This trend of ditching baskets due to problems with the purchase of the checkout process was not for one specific reason. Technical errors on the website were the most often-cited annoyance of customers, resulting in 5.3 million online consumers dropping their purchases at the last stage.
Furthermore, delivery prices (13 per cent) and timings (eight per cent) also proved to be problematic as shoppers searched for alternative companies who could get them their goods by Christmas.
John Lillie, vice-president of Tealeaf comments: "Despite the potential gains up for grabs, retailers without a cohesive customer experience management strategy in place are still literally putting obstacles in the way of their customers successfully buying from them, in the form of unattended website errors and complicated checkout processes.
"[T]hese avoidable mistakes are also damaging consumer trust, as well as brand reputation, leading to long-term revenue losses."
Last month, comScore revealed that Christmas e-commerce spending for the first 56 days of the November to December period experienced a 13 per cent increase on the previous year.
Living Streams "Improving clients' profitability through better use of the internet".