How do consumer choose a distribution channel?

A general question that we are putting into the context of online fashion shopping.

Fashion is revenue-wise the leading segment of eCommerce. A highly competitive market – off- and online. Because of that it is one of the most important aspects to understand which factors influence whether a consumer buys an item online, in store or via catalog.



Finding the item, they are looking for is for two-thirds of the respondents the most relevant factor when choosing a distribution channel, followed by the general availability of the item for half of the interviewed individuals. In general, the answers of the “frequency groups” are comparable to some point except from consumers that shop less than once per half year. For them the available budget matters a lot. Speaking in numbers 58 percent. In contrast the available time for purchases is only important for 5 percent of them. But is offline and online shopping an either/or question?



Based on our result, it is not. Three-quarter of the respondents already searched online for an item found in a store. Almost half of them (47 percent) wanted to see if the product is cheaper online. 38 percent looked for different sizes and colors while 23 percent searched for similar products. Also three-quarter of the respondents already searched in a store for items found online. Most of the respondents were not sure about the sizes or how the product would look like in reality – costumer experience that is hard to replace online. Furthermore, shipping costs and shipping time matters to them. Although many online players tend to include shipping costs, the shipping time is still a hurdle to take when running an online shop.




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July 2018