Amazon beats Google in the eRetail search

Michael King: Head of Reprise Digital South Africa, an IPG Mediabrands company

 When thinking ‘search’, you’d be forgiven for assuming that Google leads the pack. A global study has shown that consumers begin their retail related searches on Amazon first (46%) followed by Google searches (34%). That may seem surprising considering that Google has traditionally dominated the online product search space – that is up until a few years ago when Amazon grew exponentially and became the front runner for retail related searches.

Between 2015 and 2018 Amazon grew from 46% to 54% with Google declining from 54% to 46%. Amazon is so popular that the site has grown 46% per annum with ad spend on the site reaching $6.3 Billion. These are impressive figures indeed, especially over such a short period of time.

Consumer purchasing behaviour has undoubtedly changed over the past few years with more and more people (87% in 2018) beginning their product searches on a digital channel vs 71% in 2017. If we look at local online behaviour here in South Africa we can absolutely see the same pattern emerging.

There’s no clear indication (yet) that Amazon will reach South Africa’s shores but this is telling consumer behaviour that retailers should be cognisant of. It’s interesting to note that as an example, Takealot has had been growing at a compound rate of 107% over the last few years, and by all indications e-retail behaviour in South Africa is following the same kind of trend.

It’s certainly an interesting space for brands to be playing in.

Reprise Digital SA DNA

Reprise is a digital-first agency, and everything we do is rooted in understanding how consumers interact across apps, sites, IOT-devices, bots, search engines, and social platforms. We uncover your audience based upon their digital fingerprints – and build a media approach to help transform your business digitally. Reprise has the ability to fuse smart digital approaches for our media agency partners in smart and sophisticated ways.