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A/NZ shoppers plan to spend less, be more selective

By Shannon Williams
Fri 22 Apr 2022

For retailers, 2022 is set to be a year of introspection as shoppers across Australia and New Zealand indicate they plan to spend less, and be more selective in prioritising essentials, according to a new report.

BigCommerce has announced the release of its latest A/NZ State of Ecommerce Report, a localised study designed to give retailers insight into consumer shopping behaviours to help them better deliver on customer expectations, enhance online shopping experiences and stay ahead of the competition.
 
“The beginning of the pandemic pushed shoppers online, and now they’re getting more selective with their spending to prioritise saving more," says Shannon Ingrey, vice president & general manager, APAC at BigCommerce.
 
"We’re at a point where retailers and merchants need to take an introspective look at their key services to address shopper pain points like website speed and fast delivery times."

The new report, which surveyed over 5,690 Australian and New Zealand shoppers, reveals debit cards have risen in popularity, whilst use of Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) providers has remained consistent. Some shoppers have indicated plans to decrease their future BNPL usage to save more for essentials, while other shoppers continue to prioritise website speed and fast delivery times in their online shopping experience. 
 
Key insights from the survey revealed:

Credit card as a proportion of last payments made has risen to 39% in 2022, up from 26% in 2020 and 2021. Debit cards have also become more popular as a payment method, increasing from 17% in 2020, to 21% in 2021 and now at 23% in 2022.

Thirty percent of respondents also indicate they plan to decrease their BNPL spend, with the majority doing so to save money for essentials (68%).

In 2022, the majority of online shoppers (~ 79%) would be likely or very likely to leave a website and purchase elsewhere if a website is too slow.

Ninety five percent of shoppers indicated free delivery would encourage them to shop with a brand again, while 92% listed expensive shipping as the main deterrent to prevent future purchases.

The majority of purchases made after receiving a marketing prompt came from email (42.1%), while respondents who made a purchase after receiving an abandoned cart email have also doubled to 32% in 2022.

Thirty four percent of respondents indicated they would abandon their purchase if they did not trust the website’s security.

Rise in credit card usage, BNPL remains stable
BNPL usage in A/NZ has remained steady. The report found just under a third of shoppers (32%) said they used BNPL to make a payment in the last six months, compared to 35% in 2021. Looking forward to future spending habits, 30% of respondents plan to decrease their BNPL spend, with the majority (68%) doing so to save money for essentials. Eleven percent of respondents said they planned to increase their spend using BNPL products, with the vast majority (72%) saying they prefer BNPL to credit or debit options.  
 
Website speed and shipping cost transparency continue to be a priority
A/NZ shoppers are prioritising website speed and shipping cost transparency as two key factors determining who they shop with. Fifty eight percent of respondents indicated high shipping costs lead them to abandon cart, with 51% saying that communicating the cost of delivery too late in the process would lead them to abandon cart (24% very likely and 27% likely). Slow delivery is still an issue for 41% of shoppers, with 14% saying they would be likely to abandon cart and 27% saying they would be very likely.

Additionally, over three quarters of respondents indicated they would leave a website and purchase elsewhere if a website is too slow. 

“It’s critical for retailers to ensure they have the right technology and infrastructure in place to prioritise fast, seamless experiences for shoppers,” Ingrey says.

Renewed focus on loyalty programs, addressing customer needs key to retention
Alongside prioritising core aspects of the shopping journey like website speed and transparency around shipping costs, it’s never been more crucial for retailers to focus on the post-purchase experience. With A/NZ shoppers getting more selective with their spending, retailers who cultivate the right rewards and loyalty programs have the potential to turn one-off shoppers into repeat customers in 2022 and beyond. 
 
Forty percent of respondents indicated they have chosen one retailer over another because of a loyalty program offering, with 69% saying they have used a loyalty program to claim a reward in the last three months. For 77% of respondents, free shipping is the number one preferred perk when it comes to these loyalty programs. 

The majority of purchases made after receiving a marketing prompt came from email (42%) and the proportion of survey respondents who continued to make a purchase after receiving an abandoned cart email has doubled up from 16% to 32% from the last survey in 2021.

“Understanding what consumers think and how they behave on a day-to-day basis will be key to the strategic decision-making of every merchant in 2022,” Ingrey says. 

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