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Generally, more US internet users prefer to purchase clothing, food, home goods and luxury items in-store than via other channels, including online, May 2016 research found.
Salesforce surveyed US internet users who had purchased consumer goods in the past 12 months and asked them which channel they prefer for purchasing various products.
Two-thirds of internet users said they prefer to purchase clothing, shoes and accessories in-store. To compare, 14% said they prefer a retailer’s website, 10% said they prefer an ecommerce site and 3% said they prefer to purchase the items secondhand from others.
Nearly all respondents (95%) said the prefer to buy food in-store. Just 1% said they prefer to buy it from a retailer’s website. And only 1% said they prefer to buy food from an ecommerce site.
Shoppers were more open to ecommerce when it came to purchasing home goods. More than two-thirds (69%) of respondents said they prefer to buy the items in-store, while 16% said they prefer to do so from an ecommerce site and 9% said they prefer to buy home goods from a retailer’s website.
Luxury goods were the least likely items to draw respondents into stores, despite the fact that the in-store shopping experience for such items is itself often luxurious. However, the luxury goods category was also different from all the others in that it was the only category a substantial share of respondents did not participate in: 18% did not buy luxury goods, vs. 1% who said the same of home goods. Taking that into account, luxury goods tilted further toward in-store than most other categories.
Separate April 2016 research from Body Labs also looked at the primary way internet users shop—particularly for apparel and footwear. The study found that nearly half of the men surveyed who shopped for footwear said they only did so in-store. Almost a quarter more said they shop for shoes mostly in-store, adding up to 69% who primarily relied on brick-and-mortar outlets for their footwear needs.
To compare, more than a third of female internet users who bought shoes said they only shop in-store for footwear. Some 29% said they shop digitally less than in-store, making it 65% of female internet users who were more likely to buy footwear in stores.
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