Possibly in the bucket of "no sh*t sherlock", the world of customer intelligence has identified the official birth of a new customer cohort. The fusion shopper. Guess what they do? They bled their time across bricks and mortar, online and click and collect (haven't we simply called this omni-channel? But wait - there is more!). Many of us here at RetailX have new titles as “Fusion Shoppers.” And did you know that fusion shoppers are typically a retailer’s highest profit or best customers?
According to the research if you are a Fusion Shopper your behaviour will look like this
In an average month consumers shop in-store five times, online four times, and use click and collect twice – with the latter growing fast.
These shoppers however are experiencing a rocky road with their experience being less than smooth. So while this is exciting to see hard stats as customers continue to shift their shopping habits, NZ retailers are on notice. The cohort indicates based on their current 49% described click & collect as “the worst of both worlds”. Which it shouldn’t be. As the fastest growing shopping method “click and collect” delivers peace of mind that what I want is going to be there when I drop into the store to pick it up. At a time that suits me.
49% described click & collect as “the worst of both worlds”
Click and Collect (or BOPIS as rest of the world calls it) is not being implemented seamlessly into our marketplace and customers are frustrated. Here is a list of the common challenges that we experience on a daily basis that give Kiwi retailers a poor scorecard.
I order click and collect only to find it might take 3-5 days for it to get to the store.
I cannot check stock availability online to even see if the product I want is at the store I want to go to.
I order click and collect and it takes AGES for my confirmation to come through.
I see something I love and the retailer doesn’t offer click and collect and I need it ASAP.
I order click and collect and the store contacts me to tell me they don’t have any stock.
I order click and collect and go to collect and no one knows where my product is.
I order click and collect, get to the store and don’t know where to go to get my order.
With more customers seeming to prefer either free shipping or picking up their purchases themselves from the nearest store in their city. Another survey conducted by online, 73% of online shoppers prefer picking up an online order just to avoid the shipping costs.
Retailers are finding it hard to juggle the execution consistently required across the different modes customers are choosing to interact with their brand. While consumers are blending, what’s clear is that shoppers aren’t getting a consistently good experience across these options. While there are key opportunities to up the game in Click and Collect with clear way-finding in-store, express service, better communications to customers and connected stock, retailers need to invest time and effort into all modes to ensure a consistent experience.
Key consumer issues identified from research and innovative concepts to address the paint point.
Image: DS Smith
1. Research continues to support in-store shopping still remains consumers’ current preferred method, it’s clear that it is not without its frustrations, with the pandemic having taken its toll on our patience and willingness to be in crowded spaces. The past 12-18 months see retailers right sizing their networks and being faced with a crisis in getting quality staff (or sometimes any customers). Investing in a quality experience where shoppers feel welcome, comfortable, able to get support when they need it means a clear focus on environment being well maintained, clean and tidy, experiences which are sharp and interesting and staff that are interested and knowledgeable.
2. For online shopping, the frustrations include having to pay for their deliveries (42%), not knowing when items will arrive (28%) and bad packaging meaning that their purchase is damaged on arrival (20%).
3. To achieve success and overcome difficulties, retailers need to main accordingly and acknowledge the fundamental role of staff collaboration through enhanced training programmes for in-store employees. This includes specialised space and manpower to provide consistent service delivery.
DO YOU NEED TO UP YOUR GAME?
Customer journey mapping is the perfect way to uncover where the gaps in your customer experience exists for all shoppers. Have you broken down those touchpoints on the path to purchase? Give us a call to find out how you can identify the gaps with a commercial lens on the biggest priorities to spend your resources on.
Juanita@retailx.co.nz or 0274 768 073
References: University of Warwick Business School and DS Smith study 2021, UK
Invesp and Neilson Study 2020, Wins and losses in BOPIS, UK