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January 25, 2024

Temu: Price Remains Key to Online Sales Success

Posted In: Retail Articles

By: Mike Duff

Contributing Editor

Temu has announced the results of a survey regarding U.S. consumer online shopping preferences and when it comes to purchasing determinations, price is primary.

Consumers remain wary about spending despite recent positive economic indicators, including a solid fourth-quarter gross domestic product gain, a record-high American Customer Satisfaction Index, and improving consumer confidence numbers. The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index increased in December to 110.7, up from a downwardly revised 101 in November. The Present Situation Index, based on consumers’ assessment of current business and labor market conditions, grew to 148.5 from 136.5 in the month earlier. The Expectations Index, based on consumers’ short-term outlook for income, business and labor market conditions, advanced to 85.6 in December, up from its downwardly revised reading of 77.4 for November. In the Conference Board analysis, readings over 100 reflect confidence in the economy moving forward and those below 80 suggest the possibility of a recession.

Still, consumers continue responding to the effects of inflation as it has played out over the past two years, even if that has generally been moving in the right direction, strengthening expectations for interest rate cuts by the United States Federal Reserve.

Price is at the forefront of consumer consciousness and retailers are aware of the sensitivity. An emphasis on value-priced gifts during the 2023 year-end holidays has been continued at Amazon. The company is promoting a list of a dozen Valentine’s Day gift items, including a Braun cordless trimmer, for under $35. Indeed, the trimmer was listed at $24.94.

Continuation of the value-price approach to the holidays is a recognition of the consumer desire to make the most of money spent.

The Temu survey suggests that the desire to do so may boost online retail.

According to the survey:

Price is the deciding factor in purchasing decisions for 63.9% of consumers, with 78.4% comparing prices online before purchasing products.

Given the choices available today, 73% of consumers believe they get better deals online than in physical stores and prefer to shop online.

The survey identified clothing and accessories, household items and consumer electronics as the top three categories consumers prefer to buy online. Online marketplaces have gained in popularity, Temu maintained, and in the 2023 holiday season, 25.7% of consumers shopped at one versus 20% who shopped at retailers’ websites. Speed of delivery filled out the top three consumer purchasing decision drivers after price and quality, according to Temu. 

Most consumers are comfortable shopping online despite scammers who target e-commerce customers. Temu asserted that 75.2% of consumers believe they are savvy enough to ensure a website is safe and trustworthy. Reading customer reviews is the most popular approach to deciding if a website is trustworthy, with 73.3% of consumers opting to go that way.

Temu found that social media has an important effect on consumer selection of online shopping sites, with younger generations more influenced by social media than older generations. Although shopping via app is the preferred approach in other countries, consumers in the United States are nearly evenly split, with 50.3% opting for websites and 49.7% for apps.

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