Shoppers Would Rather Use Displays, Interactive Stations Than Talk To Store Staff: Report
April 29, 2014 by Dave Haynes
Digital devices will be influencing half of all in-store sales by the end of this year, suggest a new report by mega consulting firm Deloitte.
Deloitte’s research, based on interviews with more than 2,000 US residents, suggests digital technologies already influence 36 percent or $1.1 trillion of in-store retail sales, and that rate is escalating at a mad pace.
Given this acceleration, The New Digital Divide report asserts, we are at a tipping point in retail — a point where digital channels should no longer be considered a separate or distinct business. Instead, digital is fundamental to the entire business and the entire shopping experience, in and out of the store. As this new reality begins to have a greater impact, retailers should change dramatically the way they think, measure, and invest in digital, and address their customers’ digital needs and wants.
- The digital impact on in-store shopping and purchase is greater and growing faster than previous projections indicated.
- From the customer’s point of view, e-Commerce and bricks-and-mortar businesses are no longer discrete. This attitude challenges the most basic organization structure and business model of many retailers.
- Many executives in your company may be working on disparate pieces of the digital guest experience. The dots — from digital to customer experience, to merchandising, to vendor decisions and others — should be connected by an integrated retail strategy.
- Customer expectations in terms of digital’s role in the bricks-and-mortar shopping journey are being (re)defined by retailers outside of your direct competitive set.
- Retailers are often failing to properly measure the impact of digital on various measures of success: traffic, conversion, order size, and loyalty. Viewed holistically, these metrics can be powerful leading indicators of customer preference and purchase intent.
This is a report understandably focused on smartphones and to a lesser extent tablets, but there are references to in-store displays and interactive stations. There are also plenty of things that anyone doing in-store digital will find interesting.
First thing, most people now whip out their phones and the conversion ratios and order sizes both benefit.
Second, consumers would rather refer to their own device, or use in-store digital tools, than speak with a sales associate.
Third, while consumer electronics is not surprisingly high in digital influence, so are things like furniture and gardening supplies.
Finally, the experience needs to be tailored. Just having in-store digital is not enough.
The features and functionality customers encounter at each touchpoint should correspond with the activity of the moment:
• What is she looking for?
• Is she shopping or buying?
• Is she at home or in the store or somewhere else – such as a competitor’s store?
Avoid the trap! Do not create a platform solution that caters to the “lowest common denominator” – the same
experience across each device or platform.
Overall, shoppers are looking for an experience that is consistent in terms of branding and information across digital device platforms. They tell us that they want sites and platforms that interface well with their particular device – for example, mobile apps and sites should focus primarily on product information, ratings, and discounts/coupons.
Good worth report and even better, a free download.