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Shoppers Look for Quality—Not Deals

Superior product quality is a top priority among consumers

Getting a good deal isn’t top of mind for shoppers. In a February 2014 study by Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business, “superior product quality” was the top priority among US marketers. While this had been the top priority since at least August 2012, the percentage of consumers who were most concerned with this had leapt substantially between August 2013 and February 2014, from 22.7% to 31.0%.

Consumers were less interested in finding a low price. In fact, this fell from second place in August 2013 to fourth place in February 2014, trailing priorities related to relationships with brands and customer service.

Looking specifically at online shoppers, Cotton Incorporated found that clothing quality was the second-biggest concern among US online shoppers when apparel shopping on the internet, cited by 82% of respondents. This trailed issues around return policies, the top response, by 1 percentage point. Nearly three-quarters worried about not being able to try on clothing, and more than six in 10 were concerned about the inability to touch the clothing—both issues that involve determining the quality of a product.

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