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Almost two-thirds of mums say that after having a child they would prefer to do all their shopping online, according to a survey by parenting website BabyCentre.

Nine out of 10 mums surveyed said they had shopped online in the past 30 days.

This shift appears to be motivated by the convenience of online shopping, since respondents reported feeling more guilty (+186%), rushed (+121%) and stressed (+39%) when shopping offline, compared to how they felt before having children.

BabyCentre's Mummy Shopper Report, which polled 1,000 women before and after they had a child, found that 68% of mums change their purchase criteria for everything they buy after having a baby. 

This includes clothing (78%), beauty (42%) and the family car (70%).

Though this might not come as a huge surprise, brands need to be aware of this change in behaviour, as respondents stated that on average 80% of all shopping decisions are made by the mother of the household.

In the clothing department, the results show that nearly all mums (91%) said comfortable fit was the single most important factor in a new outfit, while its 'sex appeal' - which is the fifth most considered factor for women without children - falls out of the top 10 once baby arrives.

Brand preferences also change - with mums switching their spending from high street favourites such as French Connection (-57%) and Coast (-65%) to Primark and Marks & Spencer (increasing in popularity by 86% and 49% respectively). 

Luxury beauty brands also suffer, with the likes of Lancôme (-47%) and Clarins (-27%) losing out to supermarket own brands (+97%).

BabyCentre SVP Mike Fogarty said advertisers should take serious note of these trends. 

These changes are not simply about price and time, but a more fundamental shift in how a woman defines and prioritises herself. Advertisers savvy to this will be able to adapt their messages and marketing activity in order communicate with new mums more effectively.”

David Moth

Published 23 March, 2012 by David Moth @ Econsultancy

David Moth is Editor and Head of Social at Econsultancy. You can follow him on Twitter or connect via Google+ and LinkedIn

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