Online shoppers in Hong Kong are the least satisfied with their online shopping experience compared with those in the United States, Europe and China, according to survey results released by comScore Inc.and UPS.
The survey, "UPS Pulse of the Online Shopper: A Customer Experience Study" for Asia and Australia, is part of a global study that measures e-commerce preferences of consumers and the integrated buying experience of shopping in physical stores and online, also known as omni-channel retailing.
It found that online shoppers in Hong Kong are the least satisfied with the online shopping experience from all the countries surveyed at only (38%), compared with the United States (83%), Europe (78%) and China (60%).
More control over purchase delivery matters the most
Online shoppers said they want more delivery options. The key reasons for the world’s lowest satisfaction includes the lack of green/environmentally friendly shipping options (34%) and the limited ability to choose a specified time of day for delivery or reroute packages (37%). The survey shows consumers view these areas as critical, providing retailers with insight on ways to drive customer retention.
Over half (55%) of the Hong Kong consumers agreed that package tracking is an essential feature and 58% of them viewed the ability to track shipments directly on the retailer’s website as the most important feature, followed by text message at 57% and email notification with a tracking number at 55%.
“Our survey reveals online shoppers value convenience and transparency greatly,” said William Ng, managing director of UPS Hong Kong and Macau. “UPS’s full suite of logistics solutions and innovative technologies provide online retailers and their end customers with flexible options and shipping milestone transparency that will enhance their experiences.”
Omnichannel retail experiences
Today’s shoppers are also becoming more discerning with choices when it comes to shopping online and seek a greater interaction with retail stores.
73% of the surveyed Hong Kong shoppers, the highest percentage in the world, have bought other items while in store to collect their online purchases, highlighting the incremental sales opportunity for retailers.
Location-based social/deal services have also gained popularity among the Hong Kong shoppers as 44% of consumers prefer to receive promotions sent by retailers using location-based social/deal services, particularly from local sites for coupons such as Yahoo! Hong Kong Deals (20%). The survey also shows 66% of Facebook users “like” the retailer to stay in touch, and 56% actively voice their opinions to the brand on Facebook.
“With the high smartphone and tablet penetration rates in Hong Kong, it is no surprise the online shopping community has grown exponentially in recent years,” said Susan Engleson, comScore senior director. “With such a sophisticated e-commerce market, retailers will need to strengthen the online and offline shopping integration to meet the changing needs of the Hong Kong consumers.”
Hassle-free returns as a competitive advantage
When asked what is considered important during the check-out process, Hong Kong had the highest number of respondents (88%) rate “easy to access reviews of other buyers” as their top preference, compared to the Asia Pacific’s average at 72%.
In addition to user reviews, 9 in 10 Hong Kong consumers also review retailers’ return policies. A hassle-free returns policy not only entices shoppers to recommend the retailer to friends (48%), but also attracts them to shop more with that retailer (43%). Other important factors: free or discounted shipping options (58%), free returns (46%) and easy returns and exchanges (36%).
The global study is based on a comScore survey of more than 14,000 frequent online shoppers in the U.S., Europe (Belgium, Netherlands, France, Germany, Italy and the UK), Asia (China, Hong Kong, Singapore), Australia, Mexico and Canada.