India leader in purchasing through social media: Study

ECOMMERCE (File) Social media is popular among millennials in their purchasing decisions

Indian online shoppers rank on top when it comes to buying products from social media sites, according to global technology company Pitney Bowes' second annual Global Online Shopping Study.

As many as 27 per cent of the people surveyed in India said they would consider buying products on social media, followed by Brazil (15 per cent) and Russia (14 per cent), the study revealed.

Social media is popular among millennials (18- to 24-year-olds) in their purchasing decisions.

In a survey of 12,000 adults from 12 nations, the study found that search engines lead in helping online shoppers find products, online marketplaces and retailer web sites for buying while mobile and social media are gaining traction.

As many as 62 per cent of the respondents said search engines are their preferred route to find products while 66 per cent respondents chose online marketplaces and 62 per cent chose retailers' web sites for the actual purchasing.

Russia (78 per cent), China and the US (76 per cent) are the top markets for online marketplace purchases while Australia (81 per cent), Britain (72 per cent) and Canada (71 per cent) are the most likely markets to utilise retailers' own portals for purchasing, said a statement announcing the survey findings.

"In today's global marketplace, e-commerce is continuing to connect the world's economies in new ways, making it possible for brands to sell, compete and expand their footprint," said Lila Snyder, president, global e-commerce, in the statement.

Nearly a quarter of the people surveyed preferred mobile devices to make online purchases.

Britain (37 per cent) leads in purchasing through mobile devices, followed by India (36 per cent), China (34 per cent) and the US (29 per cent).

Just like social media, online purchasing through mobile device is again popular with millennials (33 per cent).

However, the biggest barriers for online shopping adoption are high shipping costs (64 per cent), delayed delivery (39 per cent) and additional fees owed during delivery (48 per cent).

Another area of concern deterring online shopping is product return policies and processes (33 per cent), the statement said.

India again leads (46 per cent) in product return concerns, followed by Germany (44 per cent) and the US (39 per cent).

Negative customer comments, reviews and ratings is another key area deterring online purchasing—with 31 per cent of the online shoppers taking them seriously.

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