- 62 per cent of female online beauty shoppers tend to stick with brands or products they’ve bought before according to a survey of 2,000 consumers
- New ‘virtual’ try-on technology positively impacts 45 per cent of beauty shoppers
- Online beauty shoppers love ‘clean’ and ‘cruelty-free’ products but are less impressed by ‘vegan-beauty’
While nearly half (44 per cent) of beauty shoppers in a new survey agree that they have bought more beauty and skincare products online (rather than in store) over the last 6 months, the research reveals that 56 per cent (rising to 62 per cent among female shoppers) tend to stick with brands or products they’ve purchased before, rather than trying anything new when shopping for beauty and skincare online.
The findings come from a survey of 2,000 UK and US consumers across all genders, aged between 16 and 35, which was commissioned by Nosto, the world’s first Commerce Experience Platform.
The study of Millennial and Generation Z shoppers also analyses the impact of a number of tactics that eCommerce stores use to encourage online beauty and skincare purchases. For example, the presence of customer reviews throughout the website is the factor most consumers say will increase the chance of them making a purchase (selected by 74 per cent of the sample, and rising to 80 per cent among female shoppers). Second is the opportunity to receive free samples to try before they buy (72 per cent), which some online beauty retailers are offering as brick-and-mortar stores remain restricted or closed due to the pandemic.
And, while it is a relatively new offering, 45 per cent of the survey sample said the presence of virtual try-on facilities (using Artificial Intelligence/Virtual Reality to try out a product online) on an eCommerce site would mean they were more likely to buy.
Also high on the list were the various ways that retailers can personalise the online shopping experience. For example, 66 per cent of survey participants are more likely to buy from brands that use technology that “recommends new or relevant products to me that are similar to what I am shopping for” and 63 per cent are more likely to buy from brands that “remembers my shopping preferences and customises the online experience accordingly”. In addition, 58 per cent of consumers are more likely to buy from a store that offers an online quiz-like experience to recommend the right products to fit their unique needs.
“With lockdowns and continuing concerns over COVID-19 likely to lead to the continued shutdown or restrictions of physical retail, beauty and cosmetics retailers face a huge opportunity online – despite challenges around encouraging shoppers to try out new brands and products,” said Jake Chatt, Head of Brand Marketing at Nosto. “We’re working to help our brands optimise their online stores to replicate the in-store experience of trying on products and getting advice from specialist consultants, which is supported by the evolving consumer preferences revealed by our survey.”
Separately, Nosto’s survey reveals that out of a list of the various ways that beauty brands describe or promote the types of ingredients they use, or their stance on ethical or social issues, ‘clean’ and ‘cruelty-free testing’ are the most likely to drive online purchases among 16 to 35 year-old consumers. Products described as ‘vegan’ were less likely to make a difference.
68 per cent of the survey respondents agreed that when shopping online they are ‘very likely’ or ‘somewhat likely’ to buy beauty and skincare products that use ‘clean ingredients’. 65 per cent say the same for products advertised as ‘cruelty-free testing’ (no testing on animals) and 59 per cent for products advertised as having ‘sustainable packaging’ and also for those promoted as ‘natural and organic’.
However, only 41 per cent of 16-35-year-old shoppers surveyed said they were ‘very’ or ‘somewhat likely’ to buy beauty and skincare products described as ‘vegan’.