|China will account for more than 60 percent of e-commerce transactions in the Asia-Pacific region this year, rising to nearly 75 percent by 2017, according to data provider eMarketer. (Photo/China Daily)|
The Chinese are first in line when it comes to online shopping, with one in seven turning to the Internet for a purchase every day and more than 60 percent shopping weekly, a ratio that is much higher than the global average, said a report released on Tuesday in Shanghai by consultancy PricewaterhouseCoopers.
"Shopping online is a daily routine for me. Shopping online is not only about buying the things you need or want, it's also about information sharing, communications and a way to keep up with the times. When you see so many of the latest models of technical devices, as well as new books and fashion styles, you don't feel left behind," said Luo Lijiao. The 32-year-old Shanghai-based laboratory worker said she shops online almost every day.
The surge in e-commerce doesn't necessarily mean that it's all bleak for brick-and-mortar stores, since consumers expect more than just "things" when they shop. Instead, they want a "total retail" approach that brings the digital experience to the physical world while offering a more integrated and personalized experience, according to PwC's report.
China's online consumers are also more active when it comes to shopping through social networks, leaving reviews of what they bought and how they were treated, according to the research.
Online shopping has become almost an essential part of daily life, said Kevin Wang, who specializes in retail at PwC.
"Customers use many devices, and they need an enhanced and consistent experience across all their devices. Customer information must 'travel' with each device and still be secure," said Wang.