June 1, 2010, 1:21 PM

Most consumers start their online shopping research with a search engine

57% of online shoppers begin their online shopping research with a search engine.

Internet Retailer
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57% of online shoppers begin their online shopping research with a search engine, suggest survey data from PowerReviews Inc., which sells ratings and review technology, and The E-Tailing Group, a research firm.

The survey found that 20% of shoppers start with a brand’s site and 18% begin at a retailer’s web site to compare several brands under one retail umbrella.

Few consumers are turning to their friends on social networks to begin their research, suggests the survey. Only 3% say they look to Facebook for product recommendations and 2% pose a question on Twitter.

Half of all the consumers surveyed say that half of their overall shopping, which includes online, in-store and catalog purchases, involves researching products online. And 82% of consumers say they are somewhat or very satisfied with the product and category information they typically find online.

The findings are based on online questionnaires sent to approximately 1,000 consumers in March. The survey respondents shop online at least four times a year and spend more than $250 with web retailers.

Comments | 3 Responses

  • I can only agree wholeheartedly with this release. We publish our news via a great blogging instrument, which immediately is posted to Google. This combined with what consumers are looking fo, drives traffic to our website in their 1000's. We have learned that as well as publishing to social media, it is best to have a great client publishing to Google as well. Google seems to be one of the best search engines when it comes to impulse buying. And we believe that it certainly helps with traffic to our website. We are a website with a great directory of UK major high street retailers, and are growing every day. We are now offering price comparison as well as news and voucher codes in their own separate departments. This way our visitors can visit either our Mall, our news department or our vouchers department, or all if they wish. Our website is at http://www.exclusiveshoppingmall.co.uk if anyone would like to take a visit. Alice Marketing Director

  • Interesting data, although I'm not sure that 57% of anything can be construed as "most" or a "majority". Nonetheless, I'm curious which engines these survey respondents preferred the most. Personally, some of the bigger CSEs like Shopzilla and PriceGrabber have fallen out of favor with me and I find myself using Google Products or Sortprice.com more often.

  • Really interesting article, wish we could see the breakdown of pure search vs strictly comparison shopping. That half of all consumers surveyed research online before making any types of purchases pays attribute to the power of the net - and reviews. This report touches on Facebook, but it'd also be great to survey the impact of personal references to online merchants. Also will be interesting to see how social networks like Facebook develop as marketplaces of their own in the future!

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