The Polish shoppers still like to pay mainly in cash but they are increasingly using contactless and mobile payments. They use alternative payment methods online and rarely buy from foreign shops (only 24% shop on non-Polish websites). When they do shop from foreign stores, they mainly choose UK, German, US and China domiciled services. Polish shoppers like to have their orders delivered to their home or their work place but parcel lockers are also very popular among Polish e-buyers. 

They spend a lot on housing and basic goods, but not as much on entertainment. Polish shoppers buy everyday products in super and hypermarkets, and buy very few groceries online – only 5% of customers have admitted to shop for food online. They are price-sensitive when it comes to everyday shopping with more than half of consumers ‘hunting’ for lower priced products and nearly one-third have decreased the number of premium products they buy in recent years. Although the purchasing power in Poland is significantly lower than in the other European markets analysed, it has seen one of the highest growth rates in recent years (up 25% between 2010 and 2015). 

“As the purchasing power increases, the consumer’s expectations towards shopping malls grow as well. Shopping centres need to make their offer more attractive, modernise their space and adopt new technologies in customer service. We are observing a qualitative change on the market of which modern payment systems, mobile applications, interactive information and communication systems are a part” – said Dominika Jędrak, Director of Research and Consultancy Services, Colliers International.

In Poland consumers seem to be resistant to using credit cards, yet they are very open to all kinds of tech novelties. Separate to the quickly growing popularity of contactless payments, they have also seen a fast rise of mobile payments. BLIK is a Polish mobile payments service, launched in early 2015 and backed by six banks. It lets customers make in-store and online payments, withdraw cash from ATMs and send P2P transfers with their mobile phones. The usage of the system has been growing at a fast rate. Within the first year of its activity, 2.5 million transactions were made by 1.6 million users. And in May 2016, a seventh bank joined the system.

One of the key influences on global shopping habits - particularly in developed countries - is that of the ageing society. The number of people over 65 years of age is set to increase from 608 million in 2015 to 1.5 billion in 2050. Poland will be among the countries with the largest share of senior population. This means that retailers need to gradually refocus their offer towards the older generation, which is becoming an increasingly important consumer group.