Women are increasingly more reliant on the internet to make purchases, while men still prefer bricks and mortar, according to a new survey from First Insight.
The survey found that men are less likely to use Amazon to shop for the best price. Fewer men also subscribe to Amazon Prime, and fewer embrace mobile shopping, according to the study.
"Men are destination drivers. ... They go in stores to touch and feel," First Insight's Greg Petro told CNBC. "They like to a execute deal [at stores] and then bring items home with them."
Female shoppers, he said, don't necessarily feel the need to go to stores in the same way. "This changes the ways retailers and brands need to react," he said.
First Insight, a technology company that helps retailers select the optimal price for their products, is releasing the results of its study Monday morning at the ShopTalk conference in Las Vegas. It surveyed 1,000 consumers in December about their shopping behaviors, online and offline.
With a gender gap driving a wedge between how women and men make purchases, retailers should take notice.
Businesses should be re-evaluating the inventory they carry in stores on a more segmented level, Petro said. With men looking for more products in person, for example, brands should have more options for them on the floor. Women, however, might only want to see a few of the best-selling items on display. Chances are they've already looked online or they're planning to make a decision online later.
"I think the data suggests women are more price sensitive and more bargain hunters ... and are more apt to execute a deal on value or price than men are," Petro said. Whereas "men are willing to wait longer" but don't necessarily do their research ahead of time.
According to First Insight's survey, men will more likely shop at full-priced retailers (42 percent), over discount or off-price retailers (18 percent). Women prefer discount retailers (38 percent) over full-price brands (31 percent).
Some of female shoppers' favorite stores included TJ Maxx, Marshalls and Homegoods, the study found, while fewer men cited visiting these locations as frequently. Those three brands are all owned by TJX Cos.
Businesses still have a long way to go to meet shoppers' expectations online and in stores, taking this "gender divide" into consideration, Petro said.
"I don't think the industry is doing a good job at all, quite frankly, in differentiating itself," he said. "Retailers who used to be able to set their own trends now don't have the listening mechanisms to understand where consumers are headed. They are used to leading instead of responding."
Shoppers' preferences today are changing more rapidly than ever. Most want new products, and fast, on a consistent basis. The trends have fueled subscription services such as Stitch Fix, which offer new options every month.
And women have also fueled a demand for better mobile apps. Forty percent of women report frequently using their phones to shops, compared with just 22 percent on men, according to First Insight.