Online shopping statistics you must know in 2020

If you’re a business owner, you should take a look at the latest online shopping statistics. Your competition is certainly following the trends with a hope to increase sales – and it’s working.

Why? Simple:

It’s crucial to understand your customers – what they want and why they act the way they do. Then you can easily improve and see conversions skyrocket.

You can learn a lot from these online shopping stats and easily boost your business – so let’s dive right in!

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    Global online shopping statistics worth knowing

    1. E-commerce sales are expected to reach $4.2 trillion by the end of this year

      According to Statista, e-commerce sales have grown at an incredible pace – from just $1.3 trillion in 2014 to the amazing $4.2 trillion by the end of 2020.

      And it will only go up from here. Total online sales are expected to reach the crazy number of $6.5 trillion by 2023.

      What’s that to say about business? Having an online presence is an absolute must – but that’s certainly no news. Especially considering the next online shopping statistics on our list.

    2. In 2020, there are 2.05 billion online shoppers

      There are currently 7.8 billion people in the world. According to Oberlo, more than a quarter of them shop online.

      The number of online shoppers is steadily increasing. Having started from 1.32 billion in 2014, it’s expected to reach 2.14 next year and keep going.

      That’s only good news for your brand since you have the chance to reach a massive audience online. A good place to start is social media, as 3.8 billion people use it – and more are joining them as we speak. Check out our article on how to boost social media engagement for some useful tips.

    3. 75% of people worldwide shop online monthly

      What’s even better news is that the majority of people shop online quite frequently – at least once a month. According to Statista:

      • 20% shop online weekly;
      • 24% shop online once every 2 weeks;
      • 31% shop online once a month;
      • 15% shop online around 3-4 times per quarter;
      • 10% shop online once every 3 months.

      These online shopping statistics are definitely in your favour, leading to regular sales, especially once you’ve attracted loyal customers. You can see some great ideas on how to increase conversions and sales in our blog.

    4. 63% of shopping journeys start online

      Think with Google has found out that more than 6 out of 10 shopping journeys begin online. That includes purchases at a brick-and-mortar store.

      Think about it – perhaps you also prefer to do some initial research online before deciding to buy something?

      Now you know why businesses need to have an immaculate online presence. If a potential customer searches for your business online and doesn’t find a helpful webpage, that will most likely frustrate and discourage them from buying from you.

      It’s a good idea to invest in some digital marketing strategies like SEO and social media to ensure you are ahead of the competition and provide excellent customer experience. This is often the deciding factor between making a sell and missing out on a promising customer.
      A girl watching her phone while walking.

    5. In 2020, 49.2% of e-commerce sales are made on mobile

      This year, almost half of all digital sales are made through mobile devices. That’s not surprising, considering that more than 51% of global online traffic is on mobile.

      For comparison, in 2017, just 34.5% of e-commerce sales came through mobile. Things have been rapidly changing.

      According to Statista, by next year, 53.9% of e-commerce sales will be made through mobile devices. 2021 will be the year desktops and laptops finally get dethroned.

    6. 61% of shoppers think search and navigation is the number one must-have site element

      According to Statista, 61% of digital shoppers feel what’s most important is to be able to easily find products online. We couldn’t agree more.

      Do test your search bar and site navigation and see whether you can provide an even smoother user and customer experience.

      Beside a straightforward navigational menu, what online buyers want (53% of them, to be precise) is to see product ratings and reviews.

      The shopping experience can be fun but also exhausting and overwhelming. We are often bombarded with numerous products and it can be confusing to sort through all of them to decide which one is the best fit for us.

      That’s why including product ratings and reviews on your ecommerce site is a great idea. They will help customers make up their mind. Otherwise, they can get discouraged and simply leave without purchasing anything, which is the worst possible outcome for both of you.

      One of the obvious goals is to get the customer to the shopping cart but even then you have to be careful not to scare them away with a checkout process that is too long or complicated or with sudden extra costs (when they thought there’s free shipping, for example). Check out our article on cart abandonment statistics for further information and tips in this regard.

      A girl shopping through her desktop computer.

    7. 72% of women and 68% of men shop online – but they shop for different products

      According to BELVG, there isn’t such a big difference between the number of men and women who make online purchases.

      Moreover, almost an equal amount of male and female shoppers buy online household goods, medicine, books, event tickets and travel/holiday accommodation.

      However, when it comes to clothes and sports goods, it’s 46% of women and 40% of men who are interested.

      18% of women versus 14% of men shop online for food and groceries, and 22% of men compared to 16% of women for film and music.

      The biggest difference is when it comes to technologies and computers – it’s 18% of women compared to 39% of men.

      Based on what you’re selling, these online shopping statistics can help you optimize your digital marketing strategy based on gender. But, of course, don’t focus on gender alone.

    8. The biggest online marketplace worldwide is Taobao

      Have you heard about the Chinese platform Taobao? According to Statista, it’s the biggest marketplace, with a gross merchandise value of 538 billion U.S. dollars last year.

      Marketplace sites like those operated by Alibaba, Amazon, and eBay accounted for more than 50% of global web sales in 2018.

      An online marketplace is a website where the products are provided by several third parties while the transactions are processed by the marketplace itself. Ecommerce marketplaces list products from numerous different sellers, which means more variety and availability in terms of products, compared to online retail stores. That’s why many online shoppers like them and shop from them regularly.

      Now let’s move on to some online shopping statistics from the United States where online shopping is thriving.

    US-specific online shopping statistics

    1. The number of digital shoppers in the US is expected to rise to 230.5 million in 2021

      Right now, it’s about 227.5 million, according to Statista.

      But what do so many people shop for online? The answer doesn’t surprise much – it’s clothes. To be exact, 59% of US shoppers purchased clothing online between Q2 of 2018 and Q2 of 2019. Books, movies, music and games, shoes, and consumer electronics follow close behind.

      However, the current COVID-19 situation might have somewhat altered consumer behavior.

    2. In March 2020, 42% of the US population purchased groceries online at least once a week

      COVID-19 has abruptly changed consumer shopping behaviour.

      According to Geekwire, because of coronavirus lockdown and similar measures, an incredible number of 42% of US citizens have bought groceries online every week last March. Two years ago, that number was only 22%.

      Now it’s expected that even after the pandemic is over, more and more people will prefer to continue purchasing their groceries online instead of going to a physical supermarket. In fact, more than half of online grocery shoppers have already stated they feel like doing so.

      That’s good news for Amazon, which has been the most popular platform for these shoppers, with 6 out of every 10 using it. Just look at that:
      Two hands exchanging goods for money.

    3. In 2020, Amazon accounts for 47% of all US e-commerce sales

      Amazon is no doubt a giant that is predicted to take over half of all US e-commerce sales by 2021. It’s also the leading online shopping app.

      That’s no surprise since this online retailer offers everything – from books, electronics, music and video streaming to groceries. Competing against Bezos’s behemoth will be tough.

    To sum up

    Now you’ve read all these online shopping statistics, it’s time to think how you can use that newfound knowledge to your advantage. Optimize your online store for mobile shopping, update your shipping and return policy or improve whatever you’ve realized can be improved now that you know what online shoppers truly desire.

    Besides, why not implement some eye-catching popups and page banners on your website to help you retain visitors and increase conversions?

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