We’ve known for (Internet) ages that there are basically early
adopters, cautious lurkers and nay-sayers. The interesting part of the
study is how these groups distribute within the three countries that
they studied: Germany, France, and the US.
Most of the open-minded shoppers (45%) were from the US. In contrast,
most of the risk-averse doubters are French (66%). Germans are very
open to online shopping, but tend toward using the Web for research and
comparison. The relative distribution of the three types of Internet
shoppers within each country is shown in a graph on our site:
Little facts like this always make great conversation starters. But
they also provide critical input for designers creating multi-national
e-commerce sites. The design elements that elicit trust for the typical
open-minded American Internet shopper will not be the right ones to
engage and persuade a French consumer. One site does not fit all.
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