Online shoppers not getting the picture


29 Nov 2007

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Some 46pc of shoppers have been disappointed after buying items online only to discover that what they got in the post wasn’t quite what they expected, according to recent research by online video specialists Vzaar.com.

Consumers, it seems, do not find the combination of text and static images helpful enough to get a proper feel for the product they are browsing online, with one in five people willing to pay more for an interactive service that would give them a better view or explanation of the product or service.

With 52pc of all Christmas shoppers in Ireland heading to the net for some part of their festive purchases, only 26pc would consider buying clothing or shoes, mostly due to not being able to touch or feel the product.

Adrian Sevitz, chief technologist at Vzaar, said: “In the busy Christmas period, innovative use of video could really help sites to stand out from the competition, encourage trust amongst customers and maximise their profits.

“The rise in popularity of video sharing sites is one of the main pillars of Web 2.0, but retailers have yet to embrace its power.”

However, research carried out for Vzaar.com shows that shoppers react more positively to video content, with 58pc of them believing that sites using video were more professional.

Some 52pc of shoppers said that seeing a video of the product would make them more likely to buy it, while 42pc said they found a shopping site that used video to be more trustworthy.

Vzaar.com, which launched in September, is a site that allows eBay users to easily upload video footage of their listings for free, using a mobile phone camera, digital camera or camcorder.

By Marie Boran