Consumers habits continue shift online but in-store remains a key shopping channel

Thu 29th March 2018

Physical stores remain the most important shopping channel for Irish consumers despite the growing influence of online retailers. According to the 2018 Irish Retail & Consumer Survey, a global piece of research from PwC, encompassing more than 22,000 global participants with 1,000 respondents in Ireland, almost half (46%) of Irish consumers shop in-store at least weekly or more often.


The research highlighted that while consumers like to shop at stores and will continue to do so, store choice will be highly influenced by those who provide the right experience, combination of value, convenience, personal service and integrated physical and online services. For example, mobile is very important, with almost a third (31%) of Irish consumers saying mobile is their preferred method of payment in-store, rising to 66% for those aged under 34.


These insights provide food for thought for retailers wishing to increase sales both online and in-store. With growing urbanisation, more time spent out of home and commuter times increasing, OOH enables advertisers to reach a potential 93% of Irish consumers. Retailers who choose the correct OOH environments and locations are at an advantage, targeting audiences at or near the Point of Sale and optimising their drive-to-store strategies.

Shopping online continues to grow in popularity with a quarter of Irish consumers shopping online weekly or more frequently. This number rises to 38% for 25-34 year olds. The survey suggests that online shopping in Ireland is set to increase significantly.

The study also reveals that nearly a third (29%) of Irish consumers make purchases via their mobile phone monthly or more frequently.  PwC Ireland estimates that monthly purchasing in Ireland via mobile phone will likely double to at least 50% by 2023.

Both traditional and Digital Out of Home formats allow greater connectivity and engagement with consumers who are frequently online while on the move. 50% of online shoppers access the internet while on the go. This cohort are 47% more likely to purchase a product online after seeing an outdoor campaign than the average Irish consumer.

Commenting on the research, Director at PwC Ireland Retail & Consumer Practice, Owen McFeely said, “Traditional retailers could be at an advantage as shopping behaviour in stores shifts more to the experience rather than just shopping,” adding “the increasing trend of shopping with a mobile device also creates significant opportunities for retailers to become fully ‘interconnected’.

As the shopping landscape evolves, Outdoor will be key to maximising campaign effectiveness for brands who wish to engage with consumers in an active mindset driving both in-store and online sales.

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Source: PwC 2018, TGI Kantar Media 2017

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