Inefficiencies Cost In-Store Retailers

December 21, 2011

This article is included in these additional categories:

Analytics, Automated & MarTech | Brand Metrics | Data-driven | Mobile Phone | Personalization | PR | Retail & E-Commerce | Technology

motorola-lost-sales.jpgOne-third of respondents to a Motorola Solutions survey released in December 2011 say that their store visits ended with an average of $125 unspent due to missed opportunities to purchase, driven by factors such as inefficient payment approaches, deal-habituated behavior, out-of-stocks, and limited store associates assistance. Of those lost opportunities, almost three-quarters did not complete their purchases with the original retailer, although 68% said their lost sales could have been prevented if a retail associate was able to order the item and have it delivered to their home.Similarly, almost 55% of shoppers would have made their purchases if an associate could have found another location that had the item in stock and told them how to get there.

According to results from a survey released in December by Oracle, if an item is not in store, 44% of shoppers expect a store associate to find it online or at a store, while one-quarter would leave the store and find it online.

Offline Satisfaction Lags Online

Data from Motorola Solutions’ “Holiday Shopping Survey” indicates that about 2 in 5 in-store shoppers said they were not satisfied with the ability to receive in-stock status, compared to 20% of online shoppers. Additionally, a higher proportion of in-store than online shoppers were not satisfied with the ease of finding correct prices (27% vs. 14%) or the check-out process (42% vs. 15%).

However, online shoppers cited a higher dissatisfaction rate than in-store shoppers with the return/exchange process (41% vs. 25%).

Self-Help Tech Improves In-Store Experience

The vast majority of shoppers report that self-help technologies have improved their shopping experience, with the highest approvals being for price checkers (83%), self-checkout payment lanes (65%), and information kiosks (59%). Nearly 2 in 5 say they would be likely to use a retailer’s wireless internet access to search for product information and post to the web while shopping, while 43% would likely use a store application on their smartphones that creates a map from a shopping list to guide them through the store on the most efficient route to complete their shopping.

Mobile Tech Customer Service Benefits Seen

3 in 4 retail associates and managers feel they provide a better in-store customer experience when equipped with the latest mobile technologies. Shoppers echoed their sentiment: two-thirds report heightened satisfaction with retailers when in-store associates utilized the latest technologies to assist in the experience. Even so, 61% of shoppers believe that they are better connected to consumer information, including coupons, competitive pricing, and product availability than store associates.

According to an RSR report [download page] released in November, 62% of retail “Winners” (defined as retailers with comparable store/sales growth of more than 3%) believe a great deal of opportunity can be realized by empowering their store managers with mobile capabilities.

About the Data: Motorola Solutions fielded two complimentary surveys from November 26 through December 13, one targeted to shoppers and one targeted to in-store associates, staff and in-store managers. 1,231 respondents completed the shopper survey without knowledge of Motorola Solutions sponsorship. 393 respondents completed the Associates survey without knowledge of Motorola Solutions sponsorship.

RSR conducted its survey online from July – October 2011 and received answers from 61 qualified respondents. 12% held senior management titles, and 35% were from retailers with more than $1 billion in 2010 revenue.

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