Study: Consumers will make more online purchases in the future, the greatest incentive is free delivery

26.09.2019

Finnish consumers estimate that they will make more online purchases in the future than they do now. Almost one fifth (18%) of the respondents estimate that they will buy everything or almost everything online in 2025. Over half (60%) of Finnish online shoppers say free delivery motivates them to buy more online. This information comes from Kantar TNS's 2019 online shopping survey commissioned by Posti. It provides a comprehensive overview of the current state of online shopping in Finland.

According to the study, 10% of people currently buy everything or almost everything online. Almost one fourth (23%) of Finns had bought products online during the last week. According to Sami Finne, Vice President, International eCommerce at Posti, physical stores still play an important role in commerce, because brick-and-mortar stores and e-commerce complement each other. 43% of consumers have sought out and read about products online, but bought them at a physical store. On the flipside, 19% have first sought out or familiarized themselves with the selection at a physical store, but ordered the products online.

Factors that increase online shopping include, for example, free delivery (60%), parcel tracking (33%) and predictive notices of delivery (30%).

"Over half (63%) of the respondents have also added more items to their shopping cart in order to get free shipping. Many international online stores pay for the delivery of the purchased items, making delivery free of charge for the consumer. This is becoming common practice in Finland as well, and will contribute to the growth of e-commerce," says Sami Finne.


Online shopping has increased for all products except for food

Products that are most commonly purchased online are music, entertainment, games, electronics and information technology. Compared to last year, the share of online shopping out of all purchases has increased for almost all products. The only exceptions are food, drinks and groceries, which have remained at the same level.

Features that consumers consider important in online stores include delivery costs that are stated clearly (93%) as well as detailed product descriptions, pictures and inexpensive delivery (92%). The most popular online store is the German Zalando (16%) and the most popular Finnish online store is Verkkokauppa.com (15%). The majority of online purchases are made on a laptop computer; however, people between the ages of 18 and 34 do most of their online shopping on a smartphone.


Online campaigns attract consumers

Over one fifth of online shoppers have made purchases during Black Friday (23%) and Christmas sales (22%). Online shoppers also like to buy during summer sales (16%), Crazy Days (8%) and January sales (7%). 5% had taken advantage of the Cyber Monday sale that takes place after Black Friday.

"Finnish online stores and brands can benefit from the phenomena seen in international e-commerce and their peak seasons. Even though the competition is global, our study shows that nearly four out of five (77%) Finns rate online stores having a Finnish-language website as at least somewhat important," Finne says.


Consumers prefer Posti Parcel Lockers as the pick-up location and Posti as the transport company

Consumers prefer to have their orders delivered to a Posti Parcel Locker (35%), Posti's or the transport company's service point (32%) or their home (12%). Over half of consumers (56%) prefer Posti to be the deliverer.


Finns are ethical consumers

According to Sami Finne, discussions about online store returns in Finland are exaggerated. The study shows that only 9% of online shoppers have returned their ordered items either completely or partially.

"In Finland, online shopping is clearly on a more sustainable foundation when compared to Central European countries," Finne says.
Digital services also help promote responsibility.

"Everyone can make their life more hassle-free and reduce their emissions by, for example, using the OmaPosti application to direct their deliveries to a point along their daily route," Finne continues.

Finns like to buy from other consumers on peer-to-peer e-commerce platforms in order to save and earn money as well as to recycle. Over half of Finns (67%) have brought from Tori.fi, almost half (47%) from Facebook and almost one fifth (24%) from Huuto.net.

According to Posti's survey on the environmental impact of e-commerce, peer-to-peer e-commerce can significantly extend the lifecycle of a product. When consumers buy used products from various recycling groups, there are no emissions from manufacturing new products or disposing of the old ones.


Posti's 2019 online shopping survey

The data was collected via the Kantar TNS Forum online panel in June-July 2019. The target group for the study consisted of Finnish internet users between the ages of 18 and 79. The total number of respondents was 2,140.

Summary of Posti's 2019 online shopping survey