Wales, like much of the world, has undergone something of a revolution in shopping habits over the past year. Preventing from visiting physical stores, shoppers have been forced instead to turn to online ones. And, if recent surveys are to be believed, they’re likely to persist in doing so, even long after the coronavirus ceases to be a consideration.
How does Wales compare with the rest of the UK?
YouGov polling commissioned by software provider Scurri has revealed that this trend is more prevalent in Wales than in any other of the home nations. 39% here are shopping more than they were during the first lockdown. This figure compares with those of Northern Ireland, Scotland and England, which sit at 27%, 32% and 36% respectively.
In Wales, 79% of customers report that they’re receiving 1-3 packages a week, compared with 69% in England and 74% in Scotland. This can in part be explained by increased fears in Wales; 41% said that they let unsafe, compared to 29% in Scotland, 26% in Northern Ireland, and 34% in England.
What are Welsh shoppers buying?
Some of the most popular categories for Welsh shoppers are home and garden items, alcohol, and health and beauty products. Welsh shoppers are also more likely to be keen to avoid the crowds, indicating that they have tried contactless delivery, Click an Collect (30% of respondents) and virtual queuing (17%).
What do the Experts say?
Larisha McGurty is the Head of Marketing for Parcel2Go, an online company which looks to compare different couriers. She is one of many predicting that the trend toward online shopping will be a long-term one. “In the current climate, customers feel safe shopping online and it is likely that these habits, whether it is buying essentials, treating yourself or even buying a gift for a relative will continue for the foreseeable future,” she said. “Even when the public start to venture back to normality with a trip out to the shops, we expect the positive online shopping experiences during this period to encourage more online purchases than before.”
Other polling, from the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, backs this view up. The survey examined the trend toward e-commerce across the world. Most respondents to this poll revealed that they’d shop online more often, with just 20% saying that they were either unlikely or very unlikely to revert to their old habits.
It’s easy to see why this trend might be around for awhile. Once you’ve gotten over the hurdle of placing your first order, you’ve overcome a significant psychological barrier. You have an account on your shop of choice, whether it be Amazon or eBay or a more specialised retailer. From there, placing an order might be as simple as a few clicks – and now that we’ve all been shopping online for the better part of a year, it’s likely that many of us will continue to do so.