Online shopping top reason for accessing internet: Survey

Online shopping and India
Online shopping is the top reason for Indians to access internet followed by social networking, said a joint survey by American Express and Nielsen on Tuesday aimed at gaining consumer insights on online buying habits.

Titled “Understanding Online Consumers”, the survey undertaken in six cities – Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Jaipur, Ahmedabad and Hyderabad – discovered banking, booking tickets and emailing quickly followed shopping and connecting with friends to access the internet.

In the survey, 98 percent respondents voted for online shopping, 96 percent for social networking, and 95 percent for banking, emailing and booking tickets.

According to the survey, the main drivers for online transaction include ease of paying online (51 percent respondents), safety and security (43 percent) and faster processing (39 percent).

Cash back offers (40 percent), discount coupons (38 percent) and cheaper prices (36 percent) are the other major pull factors for virtual shopping, the survey said.

“With a booming e-commerce and e-services market, brands have become price-competitive, 60 percent of respondents cited that they get enticed to shop online during discount days,” it said.

Growing inclination to pay utility bills online is another trend found by the survey.

“Three out of four people pay their utility bills online. Tech-savvy youth (age group 18-30 years) aptly targeted by online recharge and utility bill payment platforms, show higher adoption rates (81 percent) for online utility bill payments,” said the survey.

Delhi and Bengaluru (81 percent) lead in online utility bill payments followed by Jaipur (75 percent) and Ahmedabad (72 percent) and Mumbai (69 percent).

Plastic money also beat hard cash as the preferred mode of payment for shopping. “70 percent Indian consumers prefer online shopping with cards over cash on delivery; quick and safe refunds being the key reason for their preference,” said the survey.

Women are more active in the virtual shopping landscape, leading online transactions above men, with 74 percent of the female respondents use plastic money for online transactions.

“Women are using credit and debit cards to shop on their mobiles (98 percent) and book flights online (56 percent). Women participants (98 percent) also have higher penetration of mobile apps as compared to men (81 percent),” the statement added.