Post-Pandemic Shoppers Prefer In-Store Shopping Reveals Emarsys Research

Post-Pandemic Shoppers Prefer In-Store Shopping Reveals Emarsys Research
B&T Magazine
Edited by B&T Magazine

A case of Covid-induced cabin fever has left Aussie shoppers longing for the store reveals new Emarsys research.

A survey of more than 1,500 Australian and New Zealand consumers revealed that 55 per cent of customers prefer to shop in-store.

Another 31 per cent said they’d prefer to shop both in-store and online, meanwhile 10 per cent said they preferred shopping exclusively online.

Some of the things consumers miss about in-person shopping include:

  • A yearning to try things on in-store (49%)
  • A desire to touch things/see things up close (48.5%)
  • Pining for the experience of being in a physical store (30%)
  • Availability of choice when shopping in-store (17%)
  • Personal service offered in story (17%)

Managing director for APAC at Emarsys, Adam Ioakim, said: “Coming out of lockdown, retailers should not underestimate the value of a premium in-store experience in building customer loyalty.

“While online shopping has its many advantages, being able to replicate the experience of trying out items or being able to see and touch them in the flesh remains a challenge.

“Retailers with an online presence should also take note to ensure that their digital offerings provide an immersive experience.”

Digital marketing manager at Lorna Jane, Jenna Lee, added: “Post pandemic, we are really focused on being able to offer our customers the choice to shop how and where they feel comfortable.

“The addition of click and collect, and store-to-door, layered with the individualised experiences Emarsys can facilitate has allowed us to build a strong customer-centric marketing approach.

“Ultimately, we are building a one-to-one relationship with each customer. By notifying them when their favourite styles are on sale or back in-stock, customers are reassured that no matter where they choose to shop, the product offering and experience they have come to know and love from Lorna Jane will be consistent.”

The study also revealed customers’ major turn offs when shopping online. These included failure of free returns, items being unavailable at checkout, poor customer service experience, inaccurate product images or not seeing the item shown and difficult or lengthy returns process.

The study also revealed offerings and experiences that consumers want to see in the future like greater loyalty benefits, faster click and collect offerings, more customisation of offers, promotions and marketing to their preferences, and having multiple click and collect options.

Ioakim added: “The option of click and collect offers the same kind of convenience in having an item available straight away when shopping in-store, but when the experience fails to deliver on this, consumers will be very easily turned off.

“An inconvenient click and collect process is in fact enough to turn off more than a fifth of consumers from shopping with a retailer.”

Overall the main factors impacting a customers decision making are discounts, with 74 per cent identifying this as the biggest loyalty inducement, fast and easy delivery, and an easy purchasing process.

“The pandemic has certainly made consumers care more about good customer service online, but it’s still no surprise to see that discounts remain a key loyalty driver,” added Ioakim.

“At the same time, as our Black Friday research highlighted back in October, discounting alone is not enough to ensure a consumer stays committed to your brand.

“Inconveniences such as slow delivery or difficult returns process are enough to make your customer switch to another retailer.”

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