Survey: Brand trust, online product info drive purchase decisions

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
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Retailers looking to convert omnichannel purchases should focus on detailed online product listings and brand-building.

According to “Consumer Research 2022: How to Meet the Demand of Omnichannel Shoppers,” a new global consumer survey from Salsify, online product pages dramatically impact online and in-store purchase decisions. Close to half (46%) of U.S. respondents will not buy a product if they don't find detailed information online. And 30% say they will not purchase if images are missing or of low quality.

Two-thirds (66%) of U.S. shoppers did not buy groceries online before the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020. Nearly half of those new to online shopping (47%) say they have already returned full-time to stores (or never stopped going). Another 38% of those new to online grocery shopping have adopted a mix of online and in-store shopping. The remaining 15% have shifted to online-only grocery shopping.

Forty-five percent of respondents across the U.S., U.K., France, and Germany, said they were willing to pay more for a similar product if it came from a brand they trusted, up 50% from the 30% of shoppers who said the same 2021. However, only 30% said they would pay more for discounted shipping, and 29% said faster shipping was worth a higher price. 

[Read more: Survey: Brands can build consumer trust with product quality]

Close to seven in 20 (68%) of all respondents said they will purchase in-store, and 56% of that same group said they will make purchases online through a retailer site.

The study also examined some omnichannel retail trends affecting respondents who are parents, with 73% of parents saying they were impacted by shortages or delays due to shipping, supply, or staffing in the past three months.  More than half of parents (53%) bought something directly on a social media channel in the last year, compared to just 25% of all non-parents.

Findings by country
The study also broke out some notable distinctions in response by country. These include:

  • Four in 10 Americans were impacted by supply chain shortages at the end of 2021, compared with only 19% of French buyers. British and German shoppers were also less impacted, coming in at 28% and 29%, respectively.
  • In each country, a majority of consumers say they choose private label products because of their lower prices. But in the U.S., liking the retailer brand matters to 37% of those surveyed. In contrast, 8% of British respondents, 13% of Germans, and 14% of French say that mattered.
  • French respondents are most likely to buy directly on a brand site, with 26% saying that's how they plan to shop next year - compared with 19% of British, 15% of Germans, and only 13% of Americans.

"As economies reopened, the omnichannel experience has evolved," said Vijayanta Gupta, senior VP of growth strategy, Salsify. "It's no longer purchasing in-store or online. Shoppers have blended the experience to create a journey that personally suits them. This has massive implications for omnichannel retailers optimizing the digital shelf to provide access to the information consumers want when they want it through brand pages."

Nearly 5,000 consumers across the U.S., U.K., Germany, and France were surveyed. For additional details and to view the full report visit this web page.