Who buys more, the women or the men? If a traditional shopping championship were to take place, the predictions would indicate the women as absolute champions. But how do things happen when shopping online? How do women inform, how loyal they are to the brand? How about the men?
In order to find answers to these questions and to many other, Valoria conducted the study “Purchasing Behavior in the Digital Consumer Age“. The study collected 1960 responses with a relevant national distribution for an urban sample.
Only to find out the gender-specific behaviors, we have split the relevant information for the comparative analysis by the two genres according to each stage of the purchase process. Here are the relevant findings.
Searching for and selecting information
Because women are more relational than men, their main source of information is friends and relatives (60% vs. 43%), but the online environment (86% for women and 82% for men) is the privileged source of both sexes. Males are mostly influenced by the advertisements in websites (63% in comparison to 50% for women), but women are more influenced by social media ads (56% compared to 35% for men).
In-store ads have the biggest influence on women (62%) and men (61%). Both women (42%) and men (51%) consider online information useful. Both women (44%) and men (48%) are informing and buying online, the second identified behavior being of those who inform online but buy from the shop (34% in both cases).
Men are more transactional than women in their buying behaviors, 54% say a better offer would make them change their choice of services or products of a brand they are currently buying, compared with only 37% of women who say they would do the same.
Both women (70%) and men (78%) say they are loyal and very loyal to a company with an online presence, and only 17% of men and 14% of women are loyal and very loyal to an offline presence only company.
When online shopping, the purchasing decision is influenced by the information provided (74% for men and 75% for women), followed by delivery time (76% for men and 69% for women) and the warranty of the traded products or services (65% for men and 71% for women).
The assumption that the local market is price sensitive is confirmed because the price and terms of delivery are the main factors taken into account for purchasing decisions by both women (55%) and men (53%), followed by brand and image (12% for men and 18% for women). The rating offered by other users in the online environment influences the choice of the desired product or service much and very much for 72% of men 76% of women.
Of all the products purchased in the online environment, electronics and home appliances ranked first for both women (74%) and men (91%), followed by clothing and footwear, 74% for women and 66% for men. In the case of products bought from the store, food is ranked first by both women (96%) and men (93%), followed by clothing/footwear (82% for women and 85% for men).
The most commonly used payment methods are the following: cash payment (50% for men and 36% for women), card payment (33% for men and 39% for women) and bank transfer (9% for men and 17%). 67% of men and 63% of women would be willing to pay between 5-10% more for digital services that save their time and offer them a very good purchasing experience.
The characteristics for which they would be willing to pay more are as follows: immediate availability (66% for men and 46% for women) and quick delivery times (66% for men and 56% for women).
As far as post-purchase experience is concerned, the warranty assistance is for the men the most important (35%), followed by technical assistance (28%), while for women the most important is the assistance provided to the clients (35%), and followed by the warranty assistance (28%).
Consumer feedback sent through social media platforms is considered by 55% of women and 45% of men as a good mechanism to discover and validate information in an objective manner and a new way of expressing dissatisfaction for 26% of men and 25% of women.
Compared with the traditional physical environment, the results of an “online shopping championship” might surprise. There are categories of privileged products for men and different values of products or services they purchase as compared to those purchased by women. Online buying behaviors differ and highlight the transactional approach of males and more relational approaches of women. In fact, the purchasing competition is not between men or women but between online stores. How they will work with vendors, improve online platforms, offer competitive pricing, or they will be able to use analytical data to build predictive growth models will depend on their success in the future.