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Consumers more engaged with ads on shopping websites

Consumers more engaged with ads on shopping websites

Nearly two thirds (61 per cent) of UK consumers are more engaged by ads when they are searching for specific items on shopping sites, according to new research from eBay Advertising.

The study, which examines the behaviour of online shoppers during the current recession, reveals that 33 per cent of UK consumers shop ‘a lot more’ online compared to six months ago.

Shoppers in Europe have migrated from the high-street to the web as consumer wallets feel the pinch, with 83 per cent of UK consumers spending more time searching and browsing products and services on the web in the last six months.   

Reasons cited for the increase in time spent online by UK shoppers include researching the right item to buy before parting with their cash (32 per cent); finding specific products and services more easily (29 per cent); and getting a bigger choice of products (18 per cent).

As shoppers become more discerning about their purchase choices, the study reveals key insights into their response to online advertising as they search, browse and buy items online. 61 per cent of shoppers pay attention to an advertisement when they are on an ecommerce site looking for a specific item to buy.

This is significantly higher compared to only 18 per cent who do the same when browsing a portal. Only 13 per cent of the users claim to pay attention to an advertisement when using social networks.    

When asked what types of online advertising prompts them to part with their cash and make a purchase online, listings on search engines (38 per cent) and display ads that appear on ecommerce sites when looking for items in a specific category (27 per cent), scored most highly.   

In contrast, video performed relatively poorly, with only 7 per cent of UK shoppers claiming a video ad had prompted them to buy a product or service in the last six months.

Pop-up ads were the least popular of all, with only 6 per cent of shoppers admitting to have chosen a product or service to buy as a direct result of viewing this type of advertising.

When asked what products consumers were currently buying more of online compared to six months ago, popular choices included consumer electronics (61 per cent); clothes, shoes and accessories (68 per cent); and health and beauty (69 per cent).

Compared to six months ago, three quarters (75 per cent) of UK shoppers polled said they were more likely to spend more money on items for the home and garden, directly reflecting the current housing market where consumers are choosing to spend on improving their current surroundings rather than moving.

In contrast, luxury items like jewellery and watches are a casualty with over half (54 per cent) of UK online shoppers admitting to spending less on these items, compared to six months ago.

Phillip Rinn, Director of Advertising Partnerships for eBay UK and EMEA, said: “The results of our study reveal some interesting trends in consumer shopping behaviour and just go to show that if you’re a brand selling a product, it’s even more crucial in a tough economy to make sure your precious advertising budget is geared towards targeting consumers who are most likely to buy.  

“Brand advertisers have two choices: follow the ‘catch all’ route of placing ads on the broad portal sites and social networks, where awareness may be high, but conversion to purchase low; or opt for a more targeted approach of reaching transaction-minded consumers who are already in the search and buy flow. As consumer wallets feel the pinch brand advertisers should look carefully at how they allocate their online spend, in order to maximise their marketing budgets”.

With 15 million unique users, 3.3 billion total page views per month and five million new items available each day in the UK alone, eBay Advertising offers brand advertisers the powerful  combination of reach and deep targeting of purchase-minded consumers, across the biggest collection of verticals on the web.


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