Of the €4 billion euros spent on online shopping in Ireland each year, €3 billion goes overseas to international etailers. Profitero stresses the need for Irish retailers to go online in order to capture some of the growth in this area.
Traditional bricks-and-mortar retailers in Ireland are now realising the benefits of going online to grow sales and profit margins; pricing intelligence reveals how online continues to win the popularity stakes with consumers despite of the difficult economic climate.
According to the Central Statistics Office, 43 per cent of Irish adults purchased an item online last year. This online activity was an increase of seven per cent on the previous year’s eCommerce figure of 36 per cent. Consumer confidence is growing in relation to online shopping in Ireland, thanks to trusted suppliers, high-quality products, secure purchasing systems and prompt checkout and delivery operations. The Internet provides retailers with the perfect location to sell and market their products.
Here are five reasons why Profitero believes Irish bricks-and-mortar retailers need to take their businesses online ahead of the upcoming festive season:
1. eCommerce is worth approximately €4 billion to the Irish economy.
Of the €4 billion being spent online by Irish shoppers each year, €3 billion goes to online businesses outside Ireland. Irish shoppers are choosing to shop online to enjoy the 24/7 availability of trading and the simple search capability. With no sign of this trend abating, retailers must adapt to the new shopping climate to capture some of this growth in online shopping.
2. More and more Irish shoppers are using their smartphone to research products before they buy the product in a store or online.
The importance of smartphones in the purchasing process cannot be overlooked by retailers. As highlighted on the Down to Business show on Newstalk FM on October 21, shoppers are going into stores to check the prices before emailing online retailers for price checks on the same product – even emailing online retailers the product id from the product they are looking at in the store.
3. Advances in technology means that retailers can send online orders directly to their bricks-and-mortar stores.
Thanks to the click-and-collect service, orders can be prepared and collected by customers at stores. Customers like having options and being able to choose home delivery or in-store collection appeals to many budgets. With click-and-collect functionality becoming an essential requirement to growth, there are immediate sales benefits of offering a online service to your customers.
4. An massive national audience awaits you on the Internet.
Approximately 2.1 million – or 70 per cent – of Irish Internet users use Facebook. There are 350,000 Irish Twitter accounts; 613,000 Irish users are now on Linkedin. The growing trend of the Internet seeping in everyday life means that many of these users check their accounts daily.
5. On average, an Irish person spends more than 18 hours online each month.
Of this, four hours and ten minutes are spent on Facebook and almost three hours are spent on Google. The top two websites visited by Irish Internet users are Google (38 per cent) and Facebook (19 per cent).
The UK is Europe’s No. 1 eCommerce market followed by Germany and France. While Ireland has some way to go to catch up with its European neighbours, Irish stores need to embrace online instead of fearing it. Having an online presence to complement your physical store – generating new sales and driving business to the store from your website – will be a key factor in performing well this festive season.
Pricing intelligence company Profitero provides retailers with actionable price intelligence data, monitoring over 50 million products across 4,000 eCommerce retailers every day, observing pricing, promotions and stock availability. We work with the world’s leading retailers, enabling them to acquire new customers and grow profit margins by monitoring and responding to changes in competitor pricing and promotional activity as they happen. For more information on Profitero price intelligence and competitor monitoring, visit www.profitero.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org