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ClearSale's data shows surge in first-time online shoppers

Friday 5 June 2020 12:13 CET | News

International fraud protection company ClearSale has released data from five countries that indicates the COVID-19 crisis has pushed more people to shop online for the first time.

According to the press release, the findings highlight the need for merchants to adjust their fraud screening tools to reflect changes in consumer behaviour. ClearSale analysed ecommerce customer data from clients based in the US, Canada, Australia, Mexico and Argentina – all countries where some form of lockdowns were in effect. The analysis showed that across all five countries, the average number of brand-new online shoppers increased by 12% between March and April 2020.

Moreover, to gather this data, ClearSale used known email addresses as a proxy for existing customers. Therefore, addresses for shoppers that weren’t already in their fraud-prevention database or one of their partners’ databases represented new shoppers in their analysis, as stated by the company’s officials. Using this approach, the portion of April’s 2020 total number of shoppers who were already known to buy online dropped in every country in the study. This data shows that more people who’ve never shopped online before are turning to ecommerce as their preferred option during quarantine.

Although acquiring new customers is an ongoing goal for merchants, the company cautions that unless sellers and fraud-prevention professionals adjust their rules and algorithms, they risk turning away these new shoppers by mistake, as in normal times, fraud filters would flag a never-before-seen email address as possible fraud, because fraudsters often create new email addresses to use when they shop with stolen cards. Nevertheless, consumers are behaving in new ways as they cope with the crisis. 

Besides, an Aite Group report commissioned by ClearSale found that false positives – rejecting good orders by mistake – could cost merchants as much as USD 443 billion by 2021, far more than the total lost to fraud. To avoid falsely declining new customers, the company recommends turning off automatic rejection of flagged orders and reviewing them manually before making a decision.


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Keywords: ClearSale, merchants, consumer behaviour, ecommerce, US, Canada, Australia, Mexico, Argentina, online shoppers, proxy, fraud-prevention database, fraud filters, fraudsters, Aite Group, false positives, fraud, COVID-19
Categories: Payments & Commerce | Digital Identity, Security & Online Fraud
Countries: World
This article is part of category

Payments & Commerce