During the coronavirus pandemic, numerous types of shopping that used to be carried out physically have moved online. The survey indicates that Norwegians do not want to go back. Only 26% of respondents said that they missed shopping in physical shops, while 9% said that they did not miss doing so at all. 34% said that they had not changed their shopping habits.
“Much like in other areas, the pandemic has resulted in an abrupt digitalisation of how we shop. I think most people are finding this to be positive. Many people seem to have made the leap to online shopping now that they have realised how much is actually available online, and how quick and easy it is”, explains Sigrun Hansen Bock.
Most people are buying electronics and clothes
The survey’s respondents were also asked if they would continue buying various types of product online after the pandemic. The products that most respondents said they would continue to buy online were electronics and clothes. 61% said they would continue to buy electronics online, while 56% said they would continue to buy clothes online.
Groceries are the least digitalised type of product. Only 19% of respondents said that they would continue buying groceries online, with 72% saying that they do not buy groceries online.
Low level of trust in companies
Although Norwegians strongly believe online shopping to be safe, they are sceptical about letting private companies collect data on them. 49% of respondents said they did not feel very certain or were not at all certain that private companies process their personal data in a satisfactory manner. For comparison, 28% were uncertain that public sector organisations process their data satisfactorily.
“It is paradoxical that Norwegians have such a high level of trust in ecommerce while having such a low level of trust in allowing private companies to hold their personal data. While Norwegians have a healthy scepticism with regard to sharing their data in theory, in practice this scepticism disappears somewhat. Perhaps Norwegians are a little naive”, comments Sigrun Hansen Bock.
54% of respondents said that they were not very worried about their personal data being hacked when shopping online, while 14% said that they were somewhat worried or very worried about this. 11% said that the fear of being hacked meant that they bought less online, while 72% said that they always or sometimes read websites’ privacy policies before clicking ‘Accept’.
“Online shops have been trusted a great deal during coronavirus. However, as a result of this trust, companies have a responsibility to ensure that their solutions are actually as safe as they seem, and that consumers’ data does not fall into the wrong hands. At the same time, consumers themselves need to take responsibility for checking that everything is in order before clicking ‘Place order’”, comments Sigrun Hansen Bock.
The types of product Norwegians will continue to buy online the most:
Sports equipment: 48%
Cosmetics and well-being products: 39%
Five tips to make shopping online safer
1. Use your common sense. If an offer looks too good to be true, it probably is.
2. Check you are using a secure connection. The web address should start with “https”, and there should be a small padlock displayed as well.
3. Use a secure network. Do not shop online over an open wireless network.
4. Make sure you are using a recognised merchant. Look up the shop and see if other people have left it good reviews.
5. Do not provide more information than you have to. If you are only going to buy something from a site once, you can usually make the purchase without providing your personal data or setting up an account.