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Survey: Online Info Tops For Shoppers


— CE shoppers
do more research online than they do
in-store before buying a CE product or
major appliance, and they turn to family,
friends and colleagues
for information
than they turn
to print media, TV, and in-store salespeople,
a MarketSource survey found.

The nationwide poll, conducted exclusively
for TWICE, also found that consumers
rank price, features and product
reviews as the most important factors influencing
their buying decision, in that order.
The next most important factors were
warranties, recommendations from family/
friends/colleagues and overall style. Warranties
are slightly more important to men
than to women, and women are generally
more influenced by brand name, the market
research company also found. Men and
women, however, are equally influenced by
price, features and reviews, in that order.

A whopping 81 percent of surveyed
respondents said they research planned
purchases by going online. Of those who
go on-line, 68 percent begin their on-line
research before ever setting foot in a
store, and they spend at least 53 minutes
conducting research.

Old-fashioned footwork is not out of vogue, however. Sixty-seven percent of
respondents conduct in-store research
before making a purchase, and 61 percent
also talk it up with family, friends,
and colleagues before buying.

Old media and salespeople fared less
well. Only 45 percent of consumers said
they use magazines or newspapers as a
resource. Respondents weren’t asked
if they conducted their print research by
reading articles or by perusing the ads.
Only 37 percent said they turned to the
TV for information, and only 33 percent
bothered to talk to a salesperson.

To find out where they shop, MarketSource
asked respondents to rank
12 factors that influence their choice of
shopping venues. The most important attribute
in selecting a place to shop was
in-stock availability, followed closely by
wide selection, the ease of finding a specific
product, and honoring advertised
discounts, in that order.

Next came a knowledgeable sales staff,
followed by a liberal return policy, clear
product information or explanatory displays,
and ease of checking out.

When asked which physical stores
they would go to first to shop, consumers
ranked Best Buy on top followed by
Walmart, Target and Sears. Top online
destinations of choice were Amazon,
Best Buy, Target, Walmart and Sears, in
that order.

MarketSource, a provider of integrated
sales and market services, compiled responses
from adults in 505 households,
yielding a sample size considered statistically
robust and providing a significance
level of +/-5 percentage points at a 95
percent confidence level. Respondents
had to be at least 18 years of age.

Of the respondents, 73 percent were
female, 38 percent had a college degree,
22 percent had a graduate degree, 28
percent had some college education, and
12 percent had a high-school education.

Twenty-four percent of respondents
had household incomes of more than
$100,000, 21 percent had household
incomes of more than $75,000 but
less than $100,000, 26 percent had incomes
of more than $50,000 but less
than $75,000, and 22 percent had incomes
of more than $25,000 but less
than $50,000.