Retailers looking to improve the in-store shopping experience might want to consider making more investments in technologies for their sales associates, according to the 10th annual Global Shopper Study from Zebra Technologies Corp.
The survey, which analyzes shopper satisfaction and retail technology trends, showed that “44 percent of surveyed shoppers are still not satisfied with staff availability and customer service.” But researchers at the company noted that the “overall, shopper satisfaction has significantly improved since the study’s inception a decade ago.”
The survey included over 7,500 shoppers from North America, Latin America, Asia-Pacific, Europe and the Middle East. About 40 percent of the respondents said that they are “better connected to consumer information than store associates” while over half of those polled said they “believe store associates armed with the latest technology improve the overall shopping experience.”
To see more details about the survey, see the infographic here.
Jeff Schmitz, senior vice president and chief marketing officer at Zebra Technologies, said the results of the 2017 Shopper Study “indicate consumers around the world believe that retailers have come a long way over the past decade to enhance the in-store shopping experience, but shopper expectations continue to rise at an exponential rate.”
“Retailers continue to invest in their physical stores; we see this with an increasing overall store count and growth in convenience and mass merchant retail,” he noted. “Sales associates armed with the right technology tools are better equipped to serve customers and increase revenue by providing the visibility and actionable insight into product information, inventory and fulfillment options that bring the online experience into the physical store.”
Other findings of the survey include a desire for faster service and delivery. “Shoppers want faster delivery, but many aren’t willing to pay for it,” authors of the report said. “Heightened customer expectations for delivery are transforming the retail landscape. While 66 percent of shoppers want next-day or same-day delivery and 37 percent prefer same-day or sooner, 27 percent would not want to pay for shipping at any speed.”
The study also revealed that consumers want more options when it comes to fulfillment. Eighty percent of respondents “purchase items in-store and either take them home or ship from store to home,” the report stated. “Shoppers are also taking advantage of other fulfillment options, such as buy online, ship to home (64 percent), buy online, pick up in-store (34 percent) and buy online, ship to alternative location (15 percent).”
Having goods in stock is also critical. The researchers of the report said that when shopping in-store, “70 percent of shoppers have left without purchasing what they were seeking. However, when it comes to out-of-stock issues, retailers can recover six in 10 incidents with discounts or alternative fulfillment options, such as ship to home.”