Top Online Purchase Drivers [Research]
May 6, 2019

Top Online Purchase Drivers [Research]

Getting people who search for, or research, products online to then make the jump and become actual buyers of that product can be challenging! In today’s online ecosystem that challenge is even deeper as there are so many digital avenues and alleyways that can make a user stray away from their initial purpose of logging online. Keeping focus and getting eyeballs to become actual conversions is the number one goal for selling and advertising products online. After all, everything else is nice but at the end of the day the goal is to bring in money.

In today’s blog post we are taking a look at data collected by Global Web Index that looks to see what things or incentives drive people to purchase products. Global Web Index asked 113,932 internet users between the ages of 16 and 64 what features most increase the likelihood of them buying a product when shopping online? The data they got back is what we want to talk about!

Here are the results in full:

  • 59% Free delivery
  • 45% Coupons and Discounts
  • 36% reviews from other customers
  • 34% easy return policy
  • 30% quick/easy online checkout process
  • 39% loyalty points
  • 29% next-day delivery
  • 21% lots of “likes” or good comments on social media
  • 16% entry in to competitions
  • 15% exclusive content or services

The results can really be split into three different tiers. The first tier of results, which can be considered the most effective, are free delivery and coupons/discounts. Almost 60% of people say that free delivery offerings motivate them to purchase something online and 45% say the same for coupons and discounts.

Tier 1

Free Delivery

At first glance, 59% for free delivery seems kind of crazy, but it starts to make sense when given some thought. If someone is taking the time to look in to a product online and go as far as looking at that product on it’s own website then that likely means they have already mentally prepared themselves to let go of their money and make a purchase. Free delivery may just be the little breeze that pushes them over the edge, the buyer may see it as an opportunity to spend only what they feel is necessary by solely buying the product and avoiding nasty shipping fees.

Any way you look at it, finding a way to offer free shipping to customers could be a big win! A 59% conversion rate when that is being offered isn’t trivial and it is the most effective of the entire list by a decent bit.

Coupons and Discounts

The other most effective method, coupons and discounts is a tried and true marketing method that you can never go wrong with! People love to feel that they are getting a bargain on something, even if they maybe wouldn’t have spent any money at all in the first place. I could go on to a website somewhere with no intention of buying something , but when I see that there is a deal that gets me a special discount well then all of a sudden I could be interested!

Tier 2

In tier two you have loyalty points at 39%, other customer reviews at 36%, easy return policy at 34%, a quick and easy online checkout process at 30%, and next day delivery at 29%. Even though these are second tier, almost all of them, other than maybe next day delivery, can still be strong players for small businesses.

Loyalty Points

Creating a loyalty membership program is not only a great way to drive more conversions but it is also a great lead magnet that can develop a more loyal customer base and a new avenue to push out exclusive deals and offerings. Depending on which direction you go with your loyalty membership it can also be a great way to build trust with your customers!

Other Customer Reviews

We’ve talked about reviews in the past and the importance behind keeping up with them. The same story is still true today in that you are going to get both good and bad reviews no doubt about it. With that in mind it is important to manage and deal with bad reviews in the proper way so that you can get the maximum benefit of people seeing your reviews and potentially becoming customers afterwards. For more on how to properly manage reviews for your business check out what we wrote on that here!

Easy Return Policy

This one is an interesting one because often times it may have something to do with what product you are selling. This chart created by Statista that focused on people who returned gifts after the holiday season shows that 75% of people returned clothing and accessories. The next nearest is 25% of people returning electronics. So obviously clothing and accessories are huge when it comes to being returned. If you are selling products in this area then creating an easy return policy may be enough to give you a leg up on your competitors!

Quick and Easy Online Checkout

Just simply making sure your checkout process is as hassle free as possible can be the difference in certain sales. From a personal experience I always love when online retailers allow me to pay through PayPal. This way I just type in my PayPal account username and password and boom I’m done. I don’t have to go through entering any credit card or personal info. It’s super simple and I can be honest saying that it has likely swayed me in the past.

Tier 3

The tier three methods may not be as good as the tier one and tier two methods but they still have a place in your online strategy as they do help in other areas that aren’t conversions! Mainly in building and developing trust in your brand while still dipping their toes in driving conversions.

Lots of “Likes” or Good Comments On Social Media

If you’re getting a lot of positive reciprocation through social media then you are doing something right! In terms of conversions it may only be getting you a small piece of the pie but what it is doing is creating the image and personality around your business that helps build that foundation of trust between you and customers!

Entry Into Competitions & Exclusive Content/Services

Both of these came in at the lowest for methods of driving conversions but what they are really good for is being strong lead magnets! Remember, lead magnets are quick and easy wins for customers that bring them closer to your business and gather info for you. Lead magnets develop brand trust, brand loyalty, and brand reputation while also providing you new ways of getting your customers interested.

So while offering entry in to competitions or exclusive content may not be effective when adding them on to sales, they can be effective when offered as free sign ups! Simply punch in your email and other info and boom here you go!


There are so many different online strategies that can each be effective in their own way when done correctly. It can be a little overwhelming but the results are worth it! If you’re going to dive in to the online world, which almost everyone needs to do to some degree, you want to do it right. Ecommerce in particular may not be for every business, but if it is for yours then you want to make the most of it! If you’re looking in to building an Ecommerce store and don’t know where to start, or if you’re just looking to ramp up your online advertising, Apollo Marketing can help you with anything that you need to reach your goals!

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