Tuesday, March 30, 2010

UK Consumers Place Confidence in Online Marketplace

During this holiday season, you should pay close attention to users in the UK. Over the past few years, these users have developed a much higher dependency on the World Wide Web than most others. According to recent research done by eMarketer, more than 44 million people are online in the UK, with 70% of homes using a broadband connection. In fact, mobile web users were on the rise as well, with roughly 31% of users confirming they used a mobile device to connect to the internet; compared to 2009, this was an increase of 8%.

The increase of online confidence can be attributed to many factors; personal preference, government policy, and advancements in technology. Nonetheless, numbers clearly show that UK users are purchasing much more online in 2010 than in previous years.

Males are far more likely to access the web using a mobile devise than females. In a study done by eMarketer, users were divided into 3 categories: mobile phone, handheld computer, and none of the above. The number of males was increasingly higher in each category excluding the ‘none of the above’ category (females were at 60%, while males ranked in at 48%).

With all this traffic, UK users can be a very lucrative demographic for online establishments, especially during the always busy holiday season.

In the months leading up to the holiday season, UK consumers have been spending more and more each year. According to Capgemini, in August, gift sales increased 8% year to year, while September saw an increase of 32%. Marketers are launching campaigns months in advance in response to the growing trend.

Internet Retailer reports show all online sectors reported an increase in growth of up to 10%, except home and garden which reported a decrease in 1%. Capgemini and IMRG are predicting online sales in the 4th quarter of 2010 will total $27.37 billion, up 16% from $23.60 billion in 2009.

If you have lists designated for UK individuals only, try to engage and convert these users in different ways than others. Find out how these users are viewing their emails, and what products/services they are more likely to purchase. A better understanding of these already profitable emails will bolster the chance for conversion.

UK consumers have a very high confidence in purchasing online. With this taken into account, you must try to segment and send properly. Males and females are accessing the internet through different mediums – take advantage of this knowledge. If you know that males are accessing the internet through mobile devices at a much higher rate than women, segment these users and send them a separate email that may be simpler when viewed on a mobile device. You should target users as individuals, not as a whole.

Author: Anthony Lee

Editor: Courtney Dillsworth, Peter Schirripa