eCommerce plays a huge role in developing the buying habits of people. But equally zoning in on consumer behaviour and expectations can help identify areas of opportunity for your eCommerce store. Being armed with this knowledge can empower innovation and help you adapt and develop your eCommerce business to increase conversion by aligning with the customer’s needs and surpassing their expectations.

Let’s take a look at the behaviour trends of consumers in the UK to help us understand what the consumer is expecting.

What are people buying and from where?

First of all clothing is top of the pile for UK online purchases. Holiday accommodations and travel come in second and then food and drink in the rankings. Online retail spend is continuing to (expected to be 14.9% this year) and will account for 20.6% of total retail, almost £96 billion. However non-eCommerce sales still count for the largest portion of overall retail sales.

Customer experience

Converting site visitors into customers is increasingly difficult. Most online stores fall short when it comes to providing a slick customer experience. This means that prioritising this aspect of your business can give you a considerable advantage.

Optimising your store for performance, choice, personalised shopping experience and eliminating any potential blockers to purchasing are all ways to ensure you expand your share of the market. It would seem that offering the best products or the lowest prices are no longer the deciding factor.


  • 56% of online shoppers would return to the eCommerce store that gives them personalised recommendations. (Bigcommerce)
  • 59% of consumers who experienced personalisation say that it significantly influenced what they purchased.
  • 74% of customers feel frustrated when website content is not personalised
  • By 2020, personalisation technology that recognises customer intent will enable digital businesses to increase profits by up to 15% (Gartner)


  • 71% of mobile purchases are influenced by emails from the retailer (Adobe)
  • 85% of customers start a purchase on one device and finish it on another (Google)
  • 52% of people say they’re less likely to re-engage with a brand following a bad mobile experience (Google)
  • Almost half of online consumers begin their shopping journey on a mobile/tablet and search for products before moving to their desktop to complete the purchase.

Email marketing

Emailing customers and making your campaigns personal is a trick most companies are missing.

  • 80% of consumers like it when they receive retail emails that recommend products to them based on previous purchases (Pure 360)
  • Only 20% of marketers use behavioural targeting meaning 80% of marketers are creating blanket campaigns instead of different offers and experiences to different shoppers. (Pure 360)

Prevent shopping cart abandonment

  • 56% of online shoppers abandon their online basket because they were presented with unexpected costs at the checkout (Shopify).
  • 23% of shoppers abandon their shopping basket if they are forced to register an account (nchannel).
  • 42% of online shoppers prefer to pay with their credit card. It’s worth noting that PayPal accounts have seen 15% year-on-year growth so giving visitors multiple payment options increases conversion rates, and reduces cart abandonment.
  • 67% of shoppers check the returns page before making a purchase (invespcro). If your returns policy isn’t to their liking, they will shop elsewhere.


This is an area where eCommerce retailers can add huge improvements to the consumer experience. Customers expect multiple options when it comes to delivery.

  • 25% of all consumers have experienced issues with delivery.
  • 17% of online consumers have received incorrect or damaged items.


Customer experience is fast overtaking price and product as the key brand differentiator. The smartest eCommerce stores will pay close attention to these trends in behaviour and be ready to adapt.

(The eCommerce statistics included in this post were found in reports from pure360, sleeknote and emarketer.)

Author: Laura Roche, Marketing Coordinator, Scurri. Find out more about how Scurri connects commerce and optimises your online ordering, shipping and delivery to be simple, effective and adaptable to your needs. Check out their blog at