Ecommerce Technology M-commerce

Shoppers in APAC do not trust retailers to fulfil their online orders


By Shawn Lim, Reporter, Asia Pacific

November 11, 2021 | 5 min read

The Asia Pacific region saw the second-highest jump in shoppers using mobile ordering year-on-year (81% in 2021 v 72% in 2020), but the region’s retailers are not seeing mobile ordering activity at the same rate as retailers in other regions.

Person shopping on Macbook with credit card

Two-thirds of shoppers plan to return to brick-and-mortar locations in the coming months

Nearly seven in 10 APAC shoppers surveyed agree they have a better shopping experience when associates use the latest technology to assist them, according to Zebra Technologies’ 14th Annual Global Shopper Study.

“The ongoing pandemic has resulted in an exponential rise in demand for click-and-collect and home delivery options, especially as retailers begin to add new fulfillment options and incentivize mobile commerce (m-commerce) transactions,” said Christanto Suryadarma, vice-president for South East Asia sales at Zebra Technologies, Asia Pacific.

“To adapt to these changes in consumer behaviors, many retailers have adjusted their processes and relooked at their perspectives on the importance of technology.”

The study surveyed over 5,000 shoppers, store associates and retail decision makers globally to gauge the opinions and expectations on today’s shopper experience, technology usage and fulfillment in June and July 2021.

What are the study findings?

  • There is a large trust gap between shoppers and retailers, with more than half of retailers surveyed believing they are completely trusted to fulfill online orders as promised, but only 38% of shoppers indicate complete trust in retailers.

  • Even retail associates are wary of their employers’ capabilities, with only 51% completely trusting their employer’s ability to deliver or fulfill customers’ online/mobile orders as promised.

  • Two-thirds of shoppers plan to return to brick-and-mortar locations in the coming months. Most (73%) want to get in and out of stores quickly.

  • 65% are still worried about exposure to others, and not as many trust retailers to adhere to health and safety mandates or protocols in stores as they did in 2020. Some shoppers don’t even want to go to a store to make a purchase.

  • Nearly three-quarters (73%) would prefer to have items delivered to them rather than pick up orders at the store or other location.

  • Over three-quarters (77%) say they have placed a mobile order, with over half of boomers taking advantage of m-commerce options.

  • 35% of boomers also say they have used mobile apps for grocery or food delivery specifically.

  • Shoppers are also researching product pricing (50%) online before they leave home. And nearly one-third are checking store inventory before they leave home, while only 19% were doing so in 2019.

  • About one-third of consumers say they use their mobile devices to look up competitive prices or browse online websites for products during shopping trips. More than 70% confirm they have recently left stores without all the items they wanted, with nearly half citing the product they wanted being out of stock as the reason for not making an in-store purchase.

  • 58% of shoppers say it’s faster to look up information on their smartphones than ask associates for help, and the majority of associates (64%) agree, leaving retailers unaware of when in-store customers are contemplating m-commerce purchases, possibly with competitors.

  • More than 25% of surveyed shoppers have placed click-and-collect m-commerce orders while out shopping, with some even completing mobile orders for home delivery.

  • 84% of retailers know this ‘do-it-yourself’ (DIY) trend is taking hold, and many are taking a closer look at how technology can be utilized to meet customers’ expectations and save sales.

  • More than six in 10 say they would be willing to purchase out-of-stock items before leaving the store if they could pick those items up at another one of the retailer’s nearby stores or the items could be shipped to their homes.

  • With retail channels blending more than ever, over three-quarters of retailers say increasing the efficiency of online order processing and fulfillment is a priority.

  • Nearly nine in 10 retailers confirm their company is now looking at ways to improve in-store pick and pack as well as warehouse fulfillment.

  • Over one-third of decision makers are now converting store space into designated pick-up and returns locations, which could help divert traffic away from a central customer service desk.

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