This week’s digital stats roundup is slightly ecommerce-heavy, however, it also includes lots of good stuff about video apps, agency growth, offline engagement and more.

For further insight, don’t forget to download the Internet Statistics Compendium.

Now, let’s get on with the show.

Consumers prefer offline channels for communicating with banks

While an omni-channel presence is becoming increasingly expected, a new study by Invoca has found that consumers much prefer offline channels when it comes to dealing with banks.

In a survey of more than 1,200 people, 75% said it’s important or extremely important to be able to switch between channels when interacting with their bank.

Likewise, 75% of respondents also said in-person or phone interactions were the most effective ways to build a relationship, with just 22% choosing an online channel like email or social.

With 80% saying that knowledge of an account history had a positive influence on their decision, the importance of good customer service is evident.

October online sales grow at the highest rate since Black Friday 2014

The latest figures from the IMRG Capgemini eRetail Sales Index has revealed that online sales grew +18.9% YoY this October – the highest rate since November 2014.

However, the Index also reported its lowest conversion rate since February 2013, with just 4.1% of website visits resulting in sales. This could reflect the growing trend for browsing, with many consumers shopping around to determine the best deal or discover product reviews.

In terms of the sectors that performed particularly well, home goods and accessories came out on top – up +23.9% and +37.7% YoY.

British consumers spend £21.7bn on impulse purchases per year

In a Display Mode survey of 2,512 UK-based consumers, over half confessed to making an impulse purchase each time they go shopping.

In total, this amounts to an estimated £21.7bn being spent on impulse purchases every year.

When asked if the impulse purchases were necessary, 62% said they were ‘wanted not needed’, 21% stated they thought ‘they might come in handy’ and 16% said they were always needed.

The most persuasive factor for encouraging impulse purchases appears to be monetary offers, with 92% citing this reason.

52% of marketers see email personalisation as a top priority

Return Path has released a new report highlighting what makes a successful email marketing program.

In a survey of industry professionals, more than half ranked personalisation as their top priority for improving success. 

Similarly, improving customer retention and increasing customer engagement were also ranked highly, being cited by 47% and 44% of respondents respectively.

In terms of barriers to success, 46% said collecting quality customer data was the biggest, followed by 44% who said increasing customer engagement.

Predicted growth for digital agencies in the UK reaches an all-time low

The latest research from Econsultancy has found that predicted year-on-year growth for digital agencies has hit the skids.

On average, the proportion of agencies predicting their business will grow in 2017 has halved in two years, going from 25% in 2014 to just 11%.

For lots more on this, you can download the Digital Agency Rate Card Survey.

27% of UK consumers plan to buy online this Black Friday

It’s typically an American event, but this year’s Black Friday is set to become truly global, as UK consumers embrace the opportunity to bag a bargain online.

A survey from One Hour Translation has found that 27% of UK consumers plan to make a purchase on Black Friday, compared to 10% who plan to buy on Cyber Monday. 

While we’re keen in the UK, other countries are less so, with France coming out as the least interested. 

The survey showed keen interest from 18% of French respondents between the ages of 25 and 44, however there was no interest whatsoever among those aged 45 and over.

Time spent in video and media apps grows by over 210% in two years

Research just released by App Annie shows that app-based video content on smartphones is on the rise.

In fact, the global time spent in the Media & Video category has grown by over 210% in the past two years, surpassing the speed at which apps in general are growing.

In the UK, mobile data usage for streaming increased by 80% between 2014 and 2015.

Likewise, both France and Germany saw a significant increase in mobile data usage for streaming over the past year.

Singles Day results in 44,500 purchases per minute 

Figures from Worldpay show it was a record-breaking year for China Singles Day, with Chinese consumers spending more than ever before.

The day, which originally began as an ‘anti-Valentine’s day’ celebration for single people, saw frenzied shopping activity – peaking at 44,505 payments per minute.

The figures also reflect an increase in awareness of the day worldwide, with 38.9% more online transactions being processed globally compared to last year.

More specifically, there was an 18.5% uplift in the volume of transactions in the UK.

74% of consumers say social video influences purchasing decisions

A new study by Brightcove has identified the effect social media video content has on consumer engagement and behaviour.

The results show a distinctly positive correlation, with 74% of consumers saying there is a connection between watching a video on social media and their buying decisions.

46% of consumers said they have actually made a purchase after watching a branded video on social media, and a further 32% have considered doing so.

Videos also appear to be effective for increasing positive sentiment – 79% agreed that it is the easiest way to get to know a brand online.

50% of retailers could fail to notice out-of-stock items this Christmas

According to research from Tyco Retail Solutions, half of retailers do not have a single view of their stock levels, meaning that many are in danger of losing valuable holiday sales. 

It has been predicted that sales could fall by over 8% this year due to dwindling stock.

In order to satisfy customer demand, seven out of 10 retailers are actively looking to improve their same or next-day fulfilment capabilities, despite the fact that only 40% appear to be investing in inventory management technology.