Indian online shoppers are a happy lot with the choices they have. As a result, they can make or break the success of an online retailer. Buyers are a choosy lot, and can change their mind about making the purchase at any time.

So what is it that keeps a buyer away from checking out? We weigh the two favourite shopper grouses – no discount and no free shipping – to see which one wins the most unpopular vote.

Paid shipping

It is true that if a shopper has to pay for transport, she or he may not buy. Free shipping is the strongest pull for any shopper, and taking it away would pose a risk to the etailer. In fact, shoppers would rather forego a discount than forego free shipping. The contrary is also an established fact. Free shipping can help increase sales.

This sentiment is not limited to India. A Comscore study has noted that 61% of shoppers will cancel an order if it does not offer free shipping. Almost all shoppers will frown if they have to pay for shipping. They might just turn to a competitor who offers free shipping for the same product/products.

This sentiment also holds good for reverse shipping. If a shopper has to pay for reverse pickup, she or he might end up not ordering again.

However, there is a small ray of hope. A Google and consulting firm A.T. Kearney study indicated that lack of discounts will not be a major deterrent to shoppers.

Ajay Gupta, partner at A.T. Kearney says, “Our data reveals that majority of buyers will continue to purchase online even if there are no discounts.”

No discounts

Inshorts, a news aggregator app, and Ipsos, a marketing and analytics company, conducted a study on the online shopping habits of the youth. The results show that a good 54% of the respondents would rather not buy a product online if the price is the same as in the shop nearby. Likewise, a BusinessLine survey (with a sample size of 850 people) established that 65% of the respondents would not buy if there were n discounts.

So what now?

The smartest thing to do in the situation is to follow a blended model. Try using a combination of partial discounts on a product and free shipping on another.

Other things that you can do (or things that you can avoid) to retain your customer include:

Need more help? Get in touch with Browntape here. We are India’s leading ecommerce solutions experts.

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