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A third of British consumers prefer to shop online

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One in three British consumers now say they prefer to shop online where they can, according to new research. Indeed, the Pay Your Way study found, one in four shopping trips is now conducted over the internet.

If we had to travel to collect and pay for those internet purchases, we’d clock up an average of 6,830 miles a year, the study found.

The Pay Your Way campaign, from the Payments Council, aims to help shoppers get to grips with modern payment options, from online to mobile and contactless and has launched the Pay Your Way website in order to explain them. It analysed the shopping habits of more than 4,000 adults in order to find out how many shopping trips the typical Briton makes in a year.

The research discovered shoppers travel on average 718 miles a year in person. That is made up of 81 shopping trips, including 35 supermarket trips, 20 to the newsagent and nine clothes shopping trips. On top of that, the same typical shopper buys online 22 times a year, including three online food store checkouts, and seven purchases of books and music. The study estimates they would have to travel 6,111 miles a year in round trips to the retailers’ nearest distribution centres, to pay for their items in person.

Some 32% of consumers said they would shop online where they could. People in their 20s were most likely to want to shop online (45%) while even among 70-year-olds 20% would rather shop through their computer than on the high street.

Sandra Quinn, of the Pay Your Way campaign, said: “This study highlights how much further afield our pounds now go – meaning that we don’t have to. The growth in internet use and modern payment options has opened up much greater choice, access and convenience to consumers.

“Already one in three Brits say they prefer to shop online rather than in person, reflecting increasing confidence in remote payments as well as the time pressures many people face today. Where people understand and have confidence in newer payment options, by and large they’re quick to pick up and exploit their benefits.”

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