UK shoppers adopt new tech faster than others globally

Krystal Peak · December 5, 2011 · Short URL:

Consumers in the UK more likely to shop for groceries online, less likely to do mobile banking

While new tech tools are helping people find deals and purchase items online with great ease, it appears that UK consumers and businesses are adopting new technology faster than other parts of the world.

A research study released Monday, conducted by the accounting firm KPMG, showed that shopping in the UK has evolved quickly due to online and mobile shopping adoption in the nation.

The speed of consumer adoption across devices and technologies is all increasing globally -- looking at the rate at which adoption has increased is a simple as looking at the seven years it tool Facebook to sign up more than 800 million active users and the 14 months it took Apple to sell more than 25 million iPad tablets.

KPMG believes these findings and the accompanying analysis demonstrates how consumer lifestyle changes are occuring rapidly around the world and proves that businesses need to keep up with the adoption rate -- especailly in the UK, where the incubation and adoption is happening at a quicker rate.

“Those companies that can accurately track and manage their customer information are increasingly looking to monetize their data assets by sharing their findings with others,” Tudor Aw, KPMG’s European head of technology told Vator. ”It will be interesting to see what the bigger players like Facebook and Amazon will do with the masses of customer information at their disposal.”

The global survey showed that 77% of shoppers in the UK preferred buying CDs, DVDs, books and video games online compared to 65% of people who do so globally.

Nearly three-quarters of shoppers in the UK preferred buying flight tickets and holiday packages online while 6 in 10 people used websites to shop for groceries. In the Americas, while more than three quarters of respondents said they are comfortable booking a flight online, only 21% said they were more likely to buy groceries online.

UK consumers are also more price conscious when it comes to choosing new devices and services, and appear more concerned about privacy and security.

Aw also expressed that "the report also shows that consumers’ concerns over privacy and data security have increased over the last few years . . . whether its retailers or banks, consumers want transparency as to what companies do about data security and they want third parties to certify this security.” 

The prevalence of smartphones and tablets are changing shopping behavior of UK citizens. Nearly half of UK respondents said they use their mobile devices to locate the nearest store, 32% to use them to research products and services and 30% for show coupons or scan in barcode product information.

UK consumers were, conversely, more reluctant than those in other parts of the world to use mobile banking services. Only 27% said they had used some form of mobile banking in the past six months (globally 52%.) The persistence of mobile banking has continued to grow, 40% in 2010.

This slower adoption of mobile banking services seem to reflect the concern that UK consumers have over security and privacy. When using a mobile device, the majority of UK respondents (+62%) said they were concerned for the potential for credit card information to be intercepted by an unauthorized party. 

Worldwide, the trend of saving personal information such as e-mails, documents or photos on the web has grown to 65%, while in the UK it is just slightly over 50%.  Consumers in the UK are also more reluctant to embrace cloud storage and sharing options (with 53% of respondents saying they do some compared with 65% globally.)

These findings come only a week after the UK government announced that it had launched a new Cyber Security Strategy. The $1 billion effort to curb cyber crime is focused on partnering with UK businesses to make the detection and reporting of cyber concerns and crimes easier solve.

Currently near 6% of the UK's GDP is enabled by the Internet and is on the track to increase over the next five years -- and is especially of importance since online crime threats and intellectually property crimes cost the UK economy billions each year, according to the Government's Cabinet Office.


Image Source --

Support VatorNews by Donating

Read more from our "Trends and news" series

More episodes