Digital Marketing Researches & Reports

UPS Pulse of the Online Shopper 2019: A Customer Experience Study | UPS

Consumer Behavior | Global

Today’s online shopper is savvier than ever and has higher expectations for information, service and the full customer experience. E-commerce also continues to change before our eyes.

You need to understand your customer’s perspective, so you can establish a deeper relationship with your customer to drive both sales today and capture the customer lifetime value of tomorrow.

The “UPS Pulse of the Online Shopper study” evaluates consumer buying habits from pre-purchase to post-delivery and answers the question of “How people shop online?”

Let’s take a quick look at the top line findings…

A Brief of the Customer Experience Journey


  • 90% of consumers research items before purchasing them online.
  • For both B2C and B2B consumers, price is the most important factor to research before making a purchase, followed by product details and delivery costs.
  • Shoppers who purchase more are savvy about the returns process, with 61% looking for the policy prior to purchasing.
  • Half of the online shoppers normally use search engines
    (Google, Bing, Baidu, etc.), while 40% search on Amazon.

2. BUY

  • 19% of consumers have more than five loyalty memberships, while 46% have two to five memberships.
  • The top reason for joining a loyalty program is free shipping (63%) followed by the members-only discount (61%) and reward points (59%).
  • 96% of online shoppers have used a marketplace. 63% of them said they do so thanks to the lower prices and 47% said they do so thanks to the free or discounted shipping.
  • 48% of consumers buy items impulsively when they shop on marketplaces.
  • Delivery cost plays a key role in completing a purchase as 41% had abandoned a cart because the cost of delivery was higher than anticipated.
Reasons for purchasing from a marketplace rather than a retailer: UPS Pulse of the Online Shopper 2019

A Figure Shows Why You Should Sell on a Marketplace


  • Free shipping encourages 36% of online shoppers to add items to the cart.
  • Shoppers like next day delivery, but they’ll consider other options. More than half of them consider cheaper but slower shipping alternatives.


  • Globally, 36% of online shoppers returned an item in the three months before this study. This rate reached 68% in India.
  • The cause for most returns still lies with issues of quality, transparency or delivery.
  • Free returns shipping drives a positive returns experience, and the more automated the process, the better.
  • 69% of consumers indicate that paying for a return affects the likelihood of buying from a retailer again.

Related Infographic: The Online Purchase Journey Across Generations, 2018


  • 77% of consumers say they’ve received poor service from a retailer. And when shoppers feel they get poor service, they complain, abandon carts, and spread bad word-of-mouth.
  • 90% of online shoppers stop purchasing or purchase less frequently due to poor customer service.

The Content of the”UPS Pulse of the Online Shopper 2019” Report:

    • Foreword by Kevin Warren
    • Survey Methodology
    • Marketplaces
    • What’s the most important part of online shopping? Research.
  • BUY
    • Customers expect a better online experience with personal engagement.
    • The fulfillment of the online shopping experience depends on shipping, tracking and receiving.
    • Keep consumers coming back with a full-service returns policy.
    • Engagement is the cornerstone of customer loyalty and it’s necessary for satisfactory customer experience.
    • Learn more about how these insights can help your business.

Number of Pages:

  • 45 Pages


  • Free


Data in this report is based on an online survey conducted on 18,000 consumers in 10 languages across 15 countries between Dec. 2018 and Jan. 2019 to investigate more about consumer buying habits. All participants in the survey made at least 2 online orders that required delivery in the 3 months prior to taking the survey.

The survey is split into two main parts:

  • The B2C study that is based on at least 1,000 surveys from each participating nation/territory. The B2C survey evaluated more than 4,000 responses from Asia/Pacific; 7,000 from the Americas; and 6,000 from Europe.
  • The B2B study was conducted online in 10 languages across 14 countries/territories and evaluated 240 responses from Asia/Pacific; 287 from the Americas; and 370 from Europe.

United Parcel Service (UPS)

Logistics & Courier

United Parcel Service (NYSE: UPS) is a global leader in logistics, offering a broad range of solutions including the transportation of packages and freight, the facilitation of international trade, and the deployment of advanced technology to manage the world of business more efficiently. Headquartered in Atlanta, UPS serves more than 220 countries and territories worldwide.

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