A new study has highlighted the importance of keeping your customers’ attention after one in five online shoppers revealed that they take over seven hours to complete a purchase.

Marketing platform Monetate analysed a random sample of more than 7 billion online shopping experiences to explore key performance indicators including add-to-basket rates, bounce rates, time to purchase and devices used.

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The EQ data revealed less than half (42%) of purchases happen within the first hour of a shopper’s browsing session. The breakdown of the key timeframes leading up to purchase were:

  • Hours 1-7: 9% of all purchases happened in the six hours immediately following a shopper’s first visit.
  • Hours 19-25: 16% of all purchases happened roughly one day after a shopper first visited a site.
  • Hours 42-48: 5% of all purchases happened nearly two days after a shopper first visited a site.
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The majority (90%) of customers began their path to purchase on a desktop with 91% completing their purchase in the same way.

Although 75% of all page views occurred on a desktop, the height of the desktop’s popularity came during working hours, namely 8am-4pm.

Outside of these hours, desktop conversion remains strong but mobile devices and tablets account for roughly 40-45% of page views during commuting hours, early morning, and late nights.

“This is incredibly important for brands to understand,” says Lucinda Duncalfe, president and chief executive officer at Monetate. “More than half of shoppers are spending a lot of time, in a lot of different places, on a lot of different devices, before they come back and buy what originally caught their eye. It’s critical then that brands ensure a customer’s shopping experience picks up where it left off, no matter the time or device.

“The big news here is how differently customers behave when using more than one device to complete a purchase. The first device used is, more often than not, also the device that gets used to complete the purchase. When you understand customer behaviour trends including purchase duration, time of day, and device type, you can optimise the shopping experience for every customer.”