Nearly half of all shoppers lack trust in e-commerce

A global survey shows that 49 percent of consumers lack trust in the cyber security of online shopping.

With a record number of closures in 2017, good old fashioned brick-and-mortar stores could use some good news. And as it turns out, a new global survey organized by Ipsos and the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) suggests that lack of trust and privacy concerns may be bringing shoppers back through their doors sometime soon. Nearly half of those questioned say their anxiety about privacy keeps them from online shopping.

As reported by 24/7 Wall Street, the survey, which was conducted in collaboration with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the Internet Society, covered thousands of internet users from 24 countries, including Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Egypt, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Poland, Republic of Korea, South Africa, Sweden, Tunisia, Turkey, United Kingdom and the United States. Of the 24,225 internet users surveyed, 49 percent cited lack of trust as their main reason for not shopping online, specifically naming “cybercriminals (82%), Internet companies (74%) and governments (65%)” as the sources of their anxiety.

Additionally, the survey found that many people still do not feel comfortable using online payment systems, particularly mobile payment systems. Only 57 percent of respondents said they would pay with their smartphone, and that number dropped to 44 percent in the U.S., 35 percent in the U.K., 29 percent in Japan and 27 percent in Germany.

Retargeting – you know, when you’re served an ad for something you were just considering buying – has always been creepy. Similarly, concerns about retailers’ abilities to protect your personal data have always existed. But now it’s very clear that these thoughts are more than a passing hesitation – they have the power to drive consumer decisions.

Ultimately, convenience is a hard thing for even paranoia to overcome and a lack of trust in e-commerce probably won’t save storefronts. More likely, the survey will drive digital businesses to shore up their own security and ability to protect consumers so as not to lose shoppers to another online retailer who can.