February 21, 2008, 12:00 AM

U.K. consumers like to compare prices, product selection, study says

Consumers in the United Kingdom are big on comparison shopping, with many using the Internet to decide where to shop, according to a new survey from Accenture. 71% said they use the Internet to compare prices.

Consumers in the United Kingdom are big on comparison shopping, with many using the Internet to decide where to shop, according to a new survey from Accenture.

Of 977 U.K. consumers surveyed, 87% said price was the key criteria for deciding where to shop while 62% cited product selection. 71% said they use the Internet to compare prices and then go to the store with the lowest price.

The survey also fund that 44% of consumers go online to determine if a product is in stock before starting their shopping trip, and 67% research products via the Internet before shopping in a store.

“The Internet has become an extension of the in-store shopping experience,” says Richard Wildman, head of Accenture’s Retail practice in the U.K. “U.K. consumers are making wide use of it to not only buy products, but to check availability and find the best prices.”

The survey also found that 56% of men-and 44% of all respondents, both men and women-prefer online shopping to in-store shopping. 44% of respondents also said they would like to learn about new products via Internet search engines.

Accenture surveyed consumers age 18 and over via the web in August 2007.

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