Majority see no online shopping change since GDPR
Written by Peter Walker
One year on from the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), UK consumers are more confident in the way their data is being used, but 60 per cent have seen no change in their online experience.
This is according to research from BounceX among 1,000 UK shoppers, which found that before GDPR came into effect, half were unlikely to read email communications from brands and retailers, and 46 per cent were unlikely to engage with email marketing content.
Over half (51 per cent) struggled to find email communications appealing and 55 per cent simply sent marketing emails from retailers straight into their junk folders. They were also less aware of how their data was being used to inform these communications.
Today, UK consumers feel positively about GDPR and generally trust companies to use their data correctly, with 36 per cent of consumers feeling that they better understand how companies use their data now, and 40 per cent believing they have more control over their data.
But despite positive sentiments, many have not felt a difference outside data safety. While 40 per cent of shoppers said they now receive fewer brand communications, while 62 per cent said they hadn’t noticed emails being more or less targeted to them after the regulations came into effect.
Rob Massa, general manager of BounceX EMEA, explained that GDPR has driven up consumer confidence in the email channel, both in terms of data protection and also the value shoppers receive from the marketing emails they have opted in to receive.
“However, most retailers are still on the journey to achieving the levels of personalised communications that can keep shoppers engaged and incentivised to drive conversions and grow customer lifetime value,” he added.
Also commenting on the anniversary, Patrick Clover, founder and chief executive of Wi-Fi tech provider BLACKBX, said that High Street retailers are trying to do the right thing, but still don’t always know what that is.
“Many have played it safe, rebuilding their email databases from scratch, but they are still not where they want to be,” he stated. “They are also worried about pushing people to subscribe, for fear of falling foul of the regulation in any way – these business owners need educating on what the rules actually are, and that building marketing lists is still possible, desirable even.
He continued: “Since we haven’t seen the massive fines many expected, I think the biggest impact of the GDPR has been consumer empowerment – more people know their rights and what businesses can and can’t do with their data.
“While this probably scares some marketers, I take the view that businesses can now build better media lists and that the people who subscribe truly want to hear from them.”