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Gadget-Shoppers Rely on Marketplaces and Ratings

With high-tech purchases expected to account for a major portion of consumer holiday spending this year, UPS has launched a 2016 UPS How to Click with High-Tech Online Shoppers study to help retailers gain insights into how to win with high-tech shoppers. According to the Consumer Technology Association (CTA), 68 percent of consumers – roughly 170 million people – plan to purchase technology gifts this holiday season.

High-tech purchasers have made significantly more purchases on their smartphones in 2016 (42 percent) versus purchasers of non-high-tech items (27 percent). High-tech purchasers are also heavy users of social media, with 42 percent following retailers’ social channels. Thirty-seven percent of high-tech purchasers say that social media influences their purchasing decisions and 25 percent are making purchases on social media sites.

While high-tech purchasers do a lot of shopping online, 46 percent of their purchases are made in store and 58 percent of these shoppers prefer to make returns to the store.

“High-tech shoppers have distinctive purchasing behaviors, and retailers need to look at what motivates them and influences their decisions across the shopping experience from pre-purchase through purchase, delivery and returns,” said David Roegge, Director of High-Tech Segment Marketing, UPS. “These shoppers hold a lot of purchasing power this holiday season, and it’s important to understand what makes them click.”

The UPS How to Click with High-Tech Online Shoppers study reveals what high-tech online purchasers want in their shopping experience. Findings show that high-tech purchasers are much like the high-tech industry. They are:

Hyper connected: Always online, heavy users of mobile and frequent users of social media in the shopping experience

Explorers: On the hunt for choices, convenience and deals and look to multiple sources of information to inform purchase decisions

Convenience-centric: Embrace the store as part of the shopping experience and look for easy returns experiences and convenient delivery options

“Offering a seamless experience across channels, empowering shoppers with information, looking for ways to add value through recommendations, deals and promotions and providing convenient options from pre-purchase to delivery and returns will help retailers get ahead with high-tech shoppers,” said Roegge. “UPS offers a broad suite of services to help high-tech companies of all sizes deliver an enhanced customer experience across the shopping journey.”

High-tech shoppers can take advantage of services such as: UPS My Choice service, which gives them control over when and where they receive their high-tech product deliveries and has more than 30 million members globally; Follow My Delivery, which provides real-time delivery progress information on critical, high-tech and high-value packages and allows consumers to make changes; and the UPS Access Point network, which includes more than 25,000 convenient alternate delivery locations worldwide.

Other findings from the study include:

Information sources: The top three information sources that influence high-tech purchasers are: marketplaces, customer ratings and search engines. Compared to non-high-tech purchasers, high-tech purchasers use mobile advertising, social media and price comparison sites much more frequently.

Peer reviews: High-tech purchasers find peer reviews (61 percent) more important versus non-high-tech purchasers (55 percent)

Recommendations and promotions: High-tech purchasers are more heavily influenced by emails with product recommendations based on what others have purchased, posts on social media and text messages with promotions versus non-high-tech purchasers

Delivery preferences: High-tech purchasers prefer alternative delivery locations (39 percent) more than non-high-tech purchasers (31 percent)

Survey methodology
Conducted by comScore in January and February 2016, the 2016 UPS How to Click with High-Tech Online Shoppers study analyzes data from 5,330 U.S. online shoppers. High-tech purchasers are defined as someone who purchased a computer, consumer electronic device, mobile phone or wearable device online.

Source: UPS Press Release

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.