Shoppers still enjoy the in-store shopping experience: 46% prefer to make purchases in a physical store, compared to 35% on laptops and 18% through mobile devices, according to the Shopper-First Retailing report by Salesforce and PublicisSapient.
The study drew on a multi-country survey of 6,000 consumers, e-Commerce shopping data and mystery shopper audits.
One key finding is that the increasingly fragmented and complex shopper journey is causing traditional retailers to lose ground, both to direct sales by brands and larger marketplaces:
- Brands: Product quality (60%) was the top reason for buying directly from a manufacturer, followed by product innovation (58%) and product uniqueness (48%);
- Marketplaces: Shoppers like to browse marketplaces when on the lookout for the best price (56%), product variety (51%), product availability (50%) or inspiration (48%); and
- Retailers: Customer service (57%) was the only reason shoppers prefer traditional retailers.
Customer service is the one area where customers prefer retailers, so retailers must ensure that that demand is met, according to Robert Garf, VP of Industry Strategy and Insights at Salesforce Commerce Cloud. While 64% of consumers feel brands don’t know who they are, knowledgeable store associates can go a long way toward making them feel welcome