Digital Malware: Impact on The E-Commerce Market
The problem of client-side Digital Malware impacting e-commerce and online revenue is bigger than ever before and growing rapidly. New malware is created and distributed at a faster pace than ever, by a growing number of bad actors. Combined with increased use of free, public unsecured wireless networks and the ever-increasing shift in consumer shopping behavior to online, the impact on online businesses is increasingly significant. With marketplace giants continuing to gain strength, and website availability and inventory management and distribution practically commodities, it is critical for e-commerce and other online businesses to focus on the customer journey and digital experience in order to continuously grow and win.
Digital Malware is responsible for the phenomenon known as Online Journey Hijacking. Consumers inadvertently and unknowingly download malware through bad extensions, free software bundles, and even by simply using a free, unsecured Wi-Fi network. This results in a barrage of pop-ups, banner ads, competitor product recommendations and other unwanted distractions across all of the websites they visit.
This report will outline benchmarks for the state of the Digital Malware problem, including the current infection rate of consumer machines, the rate of infected online sessions, causes for fluctuation, and guidance on how online businesses can protect their customer journey and win back lost revenue.
Data is drawn from Namogoo’s monitoring of 500 million website sessions across a range of industries for a 6 month period from Jan-June 2017. Namogoo’s solution detects Journey Hijacking activity and protects customer website visits from being cluttered with unwanted malicious content.
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Online Journey Hijacking: The Scale and Impact
Infection Rates and Ad Injections
Namogoo found that between 15-25 percent of user sessions are infected with Digital Malware. During those infected sessions, between 40-70 percent of malware ad injections include competitive product ads luring or driving traffic away from the site, leading to significant lost revenue for the site owner. In addition, between 7-12 percent of sessions tested included browser bots designed to skew site analytics for the retailer through non-human activity and hide Digital Malware that had been installed.
The ranges are a result of seasonality — during peak periods, more people are shopping online, and Digital Malware creators increase activity.
Journey Hijack Prevention: Customer Impact
E-commerce sites that protected their customer experience with Namogoo’s solution experienced an overall improvement in key business metrics. These include an immediate increase in customer retention rates of between 15-20 percent, a decrease in cart abandonment between 5-7 percent, and a 10-17 percent decrease in bounce rates. Additionally, users experienced a 10-15 percent improvement in page-load performance, leading to an increase in number of sessions per customer of 15-20 percent. Most significantly, these improvements created a 10-25 percent higher conversion rate for the users impacted by Digital Malware.
Long-Term Customer Impact: One Year Later
E-commerce sites the use Namogoo continue to experience a significant increase in site and business performance one year out from implementation. Specifically, customer retention rates improved by 85-95 percent. Cart abandonment decreased by 15-25 percent, and bounce rates decreased by 5-10 percent. Additionally, users experienced a 10-15 percent improvement in page-load performance, leading to an increase in number of sessions per customer of 25-30 percent. Overall, 1 year later, Namogoo customers see an increase in conversion rates of 20-30 percent for the users impacted by Digital Malware.
Q3-Q4 2017 Projections
Previous years’ data shows a surge of infection rates during these key times, with a drop back to the “normal” rate of 15-17% in September and then again in late December.
- Back to School: Jump from 15-17% to 20-30% in August
- Holiday Shopping: October-December: Surge to 25-30%
The trend is expected to continue in Q3-Q4 2017, with rates potentially skyrocketing to 30-50% as the proliferation of Digital Malware continues.