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Online retail and banking boosts consumer mobility

Online retail and banking boosts consumer mobility
2011 has been a year when Russians have become more adept at mouse clicks than heel clicks when doing their shopping.

­According to PriceWaterhouseCoopers e-commerce in Russia will be up more than a third this year, while traditional retailing is up about six percent.

TNS, global market research says 90% of internet users chose products online, and 70% of them use online payments. Russia’s major search engine Yandex says around 12.5 million people have used its Yandex.Market, consumer choice and comparison tool, thanks to “internet users from Russian regions and growth in the number of online stores registered on the site.”

Plastic is fantastic – when you can pay with it!

It’s no secret integration of social applications onto mobile devices is driving online sales, however all these apps are useless if you don’t have a credit or debit card. But users have to be careful because card spending can become addictive because it is so simple.

The annual Citi Bank forecast for retail spending shows a 28% growth in December, with over half the goods purchased online. “During the year the online retail spending was gaining its audience with volumes of purchases online booming even more than other credit card payments. For instance, the rate of growth of online payments outperformed other card payments by 7,6%,” the report says.

However the growth of online payments will slowdown in December, while most of the payments will be made directly, believe Citi bank analysts. “We expect moderate growth of online payments in December-around 17%, on the other hand our clients are expected to proceed 28% of payments through their credit cards.”

Strong competition between online and traditional retail has led to development of multifunctional shopping which makes shopping easier and faster. IT technology will go further to predict and explain consuming patterns believe experts from Retailer.ru.

Why stay off line when online is cheaper?

Commercial real estate brokers Cushman & Wakefield say leading retailers are still cautious about opening new stores. Opening up online is less costly, and therefor less risky in the uncertain economic climate.

“Modern retailers focus on needs for efficiency, sustainability and for the integration of technology.”

Cushman & Wakefield experts are solid that “the currently projected delivery of 6.8 million sq.m of retail space for 2011 – almost half of which is in Russia and Turkey – is likely to fall short due to various schemes reporting delays,” leading to growth of online retail at some point.

Andrey Pachkin, business development manager at Microsoft adds that nowadays retailers look for successful schemes to cut expenditures by launching on site shop together with online. “Online retail is gaining momentum. For instance, online multimedia sales of M.Video and mobile retailer Svyaznoi are booming.”

Guess the customer needs or create them

Sergey Altukhov, of SAPsays modern IT services will allow customers to obtain information quickly and retailers to identify the customer.“X5 retail group has already been using the online system of loyalty integrated in customers’ mobile phones. While MTC and electronic retailer M.Video were Russian pioneers in using QR bar codes allowing customers get all the necessary information about the product through by scanning the code with mobile cameras.”

Pachkin from Microsoft, says product-customer interaction becomes crucially important for retailer and clients. “Show rooms are very popular in Russia because the museum rules such as–“Do not touch” is not applicable there. The idea is to touch, test and try things on and at the same time using interactive technologies and broadband access leave your comments, suggestions and rate products”.

Analyst from Trendwatching.com believe that traditional shopping habits will dominate. “Traditional onsite shopping will continue to grow since people are looking not only for satisfaction of their material needs but also a sort of relief of stress and routine.”

However, the integration of both options will bring competitive advantages for retailers, add Trendwatching.com experts. “Since communication and interaction expanding online with lots of services available to express your point of view or add information retailers look forward to implementing and providing consumer interaction through various applications which could be used as marketing channels and resource for statistic.”