Over the past few years, the income gap in the U.S. has become a hot political topic. For e-commerce retailers globally, a spending gap should receive just as much attention, according to a new report. In the 12 months ending March 2016, 13 percent of online shoppers worldwide accounted for 87 percent of total e-commerce sales of physical goods, according to Worldpay’s new Pay That Way report. The research polled 20,000 consumers in 10 countries and identified 13 percent of the world’s population as “Super-Shoppers.” These shoppers are marked both by the frequency with which they shop online and the amount they spend. Eighty-five percent of Super-Shoppers make a purchase at least once a week and 15 percent do so daily.
From a payments perspective, Super-Shoppers consistently prefer credit cards—even in markets where credit cards are not the dominant payment method. Globally, the report found, 52 percent of these high-value customers said they preferred to use credit cards, compared to the average overall of 42 percent. In Germany, for example, more than 70 percent of Super-Shoppers polled said they used a credit card to make their most recent online purchase, compared to the national average of 36 percent.
“The remarkably consistent buying behavior of these Super-Shoppers across markets is a very interesting phenomenon for online retailers,” said Casey Bullock, general manager of North America and Global eCommerce at Worldpay. “It suggests that retailers should be looking at these consumers as a distinct group that often behaves very differently from the rest of their customers. For example, their high use of credit cards in markets where these cards have little or no traction among the general population means that a retailer who doesn’t support the full range of payment methods could actually be losing major revenue without noticing.”