The title is “From Fashion re-design to Food re-volution” and the goal of this extraordinary autumn edition of Netcomm is to re-see, re-think and re-compose the relationship between the market and new digital users. After the increase in online purchases revealed in the May edition, the acceleration in Italy of the eCommerce pandemic did not stop even after the block with an increase in the frequency of purchases by users of 79%. Too high costs of eCommerce for Italian companies.
Contactless delivery, at home or in the office, is still the one preferred by over 93% of users. On the other hand, a short-term recovery in the frequency of withdrawal of products away from home (eg groceries excluded) appears more unlikely.
Overall, the volumes of online transactions in Italy in the last 12 months have grown by 15.4%, 7% only in the lockdown, with product demand increased by 10%. A scenario that saw some eCommerce services manage a 10 times higher demand in the Covid phase, generating problems in logistics in 25% of cases, with a shortage of available products (26%) and 18% of cases in which it was not possible deliver the goods.
On the other hand, as regards the use of marketplaces, according to Netcomm research in Italy, the critical elements see 34% of the inconvenience compared to price positioning, problems related to logistics management and very high taxation commissions, impasse due to the slow integration of technologies by Italian companies compared to the European average.
In the field of fashion, the more digital consumers demand greater attention from the brand to sustainability and social inclusion. According to a research by Nextplora, people with greater digital confidence, after the experience of the block, continue to resort more to online fashion purchases to the detriment of traditional stores: those who inquire and buy online have increased, going from 18% to 24% in low digital users, and from 28% to 38% in high digital users.
Other consumers, on the other hand, demonstrate a tendency to return to the store, with a high expectation of new customer experiences experienced online. The direct touch points of the brand rediscover a new role, much more significant: in fact, they amplify the perceived value of the brand in the users who consult them during their customer journey. These users, in fact, most strongly associate the ability to be fashionable, in step with the times and reliable to the brands with which they interact directly. This need to have a relationship of participation and sharing with the brand is in line with the new forms of digital humanization that are emerging, for example, in Asia, where live streaming commerce is becoming a highly appreciated mode of shopping.
Food shopping, as we have seen, had a peak in the lockdown with an increase of 2.6 million more consumers, this accelerated by 5-10 years the growth of digital that is entering heavily in the sector by detecting the 2 % more online penetration.
But even now, in the post quarantine, Italians continue to buy on the web: if in phase 1 17, 7% of consumers made at least 1 food purchase, in phase 2 36% maintain this habit. As with fashion, consumers show more attention to sustainability and the ecological aspect in the Food-Grocery sector; attention is increasing above all towards prices: from 38% in early April to 56% in July.
The catering sector is slowly returning to work after the huge loss in the months of the block equal to -6.7 billion lost. The continuing threat of new closures and restriction measures do not help the sector to revive but some positive responses are coming from consumers: now, 33.1% have started going back to bars and restaurants while 47.3% say who will frequent the clubs less than before.
The data tell us that the digital channel is getting closer and closer to the physical channel in the Food-Grocery sector, this pushes the market to search for new hybrid models of points of sale and to invest in proximity e-commerce.
The home has become the fundamental place of our needs, not only have we adapted it to be the office or the classroom but now it persists in being the dressing room and restaurant for most of the Italian population. Omnichannel remains an undisputed protagonist for companies that have to adapt to the new behaviors of digital consumers. The delivery method has also changed considerably: the growth of “click and collect” has remained unchanged in the post-lockdown and the neighborhood shops have made extraordinary steps and evolutions to remedy the needs of people in the difficult months of the pandemic.
For both sectors, the online shopping experience is very satisfying.
The satisfaction rate of the shopping experience in September recorded a satisfaction by online consumers of 8.5 on a scale of 1 to 10. After the delivery problems, Italian e-shoppers continue to explore new categories of online purchases: 36.4% (+ 1.8% compared to April) thought about buying online products that they had always bought in the store before; 25% (23.3% in April) did their shopping online; however, 42% of digital consumers believe that prices are higher (up from 28% in April).
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