The balance of power between consumer and retailer has is changing. Consumers are driving demand for new technology and are more connected than ever before. Retailers need to innovate and find new ways of getting customers engaged and back in the store.
Consumers want availability to product information and price in a variety of ways — in-store, online and on mobile devices. As consumer expectations rise, consumers will no longer tolerate poor service at any point in the delivery channel.
The “New Retail Democracy” Study done by Oracle in 2013 found that:
- Availability trumps price: 58% regard availability as more of a priority than how much they need to pay.
- Understanding whether a product is available influences loyalty and spend: 46% say they are more likely to be loyal to a retailer that provides availability information and 30% say they are more likely to spend more with those retailers.
- There are consequences when product is not available in a convenient location or delivery timeframe: only 8% will wait for backordered product to come into stock, while 47% will search online and 41% will try another retailer.
- Consumers see the most value in technologies that provide information: 33% see the most value in visibility of stock “so I can purchase when I want”; 24% are looking for access to product information through digital and store channels.So where does this leave todays retailers? Consumers are impatient for product and information and loyalty scarcely exists as the new ‘next best thing’ is just around the corner. I think one key takeaway is for retailers to research and truly understand their customer and respond to their needs accordingly. If you’re not doing this then how can you expect to keep them happy and connected to your brand.