2019 Retail Trends Report by Microsoft is out, and it brings out several important takeaways for managers and owners of retail stores. In this article, we list down the top five stats that you should know and understand to improve the customer experience at your retail store.
From the rise of mobile wallet as a payment option to the willingness of customers to pay more for a better experience, the trends among the shoppers are making large as well as smaller stores to change the way they handle clients. Here are the top stats from the 2019 Retail Trends Report by Microsoft and what you can do about it.
Table of Contents
1. 86% Of The Customers Said They Would Pay More For A Better Experience
What It Means: Customer experience is one of the prime factors in attracting sales. The report suggests that almost 4 out of every 5 customers are willing to spend more if the customer experience is better, or the cost doesn’t concern them if the customer experience is better. It also indicates that investment made to deliver a better customer experience can bring in sound returns.
What You Can Do About It: If you are running a retail store and trying to win the price war at the cost of compromising customer experience, then it is high time you changed the strategy. Instead, you can even monetize it for your gain by deploying solutions that can enhance the customer experience at your store.
Smart deployment of technology, such as – efficient and feature-rich POS tool, trained store staff, upgraded inventory information, etc. is one of the key steps in the process of improving the user experience for the clients. Moreover, it critical to understand that customer experience is something that needs constant upgrades as customers become habitual of the current standards soon. That is why even some of the biggest brands ensure that their in-store experience is enhanced regularly.
2. 88% Of American Adults Would Like to Check Out Faster
What It Means: Buyers don’t want to spend time once they have made the purchase decision – be it waiting in the queue at the physical store or multi-step online check out process. In the list of complaints, ‘slow checkout process’ and ‘long lines’ are at the top, according to the report.
What You Can Do About It: Setting up the right number of registers for sales that are packed with smart technologies to speed up the process can be the critical game-changer. Hosting POS software such as QuickBooks on High-Performance Computing (HPC) servers enables you to execute the checkout process faster.
Not only it speeds up the point-of-sale processes, but it also reduces the dependency on the local hardware to set up registers faster to entertain peak season demands.
Since the hosted POS solution is compatible with online payment gateways as well, it enables faster checkout even with the online shopping solutions.
3. 75% Of Customers Who Prefer Personalized Experiences
What It Means: Most of the modern POS software can manage customer data, such as their order history, preferred payment medium, loyalty points, and other such details. However, several retail store owners fail to make effective use of this information. Utilizing this information, one can treat the customers better by delivering a personalized experience, and only one-fourth of the customers will neglect that kind of experience.
What You Can Do About It: Retail store managers and owners need to collect the information of the clients in a subtle manner that doesn’t hurt the customer’s experience. Along with that, the strategic way of using this information should be considered and implemented. Recommending the products and brands that the customer is interested in and discounts they are eligible for shopping with you are some of the basics.
With the personal details, like birthdates and anniversary dates, can be used to send a text or email greetings to show that you value the customers.
4. 83% Of Shoppers Believe They’re More Knowledgeable Than Retail Store Associates
What It Means: While the retail store associates or salespersons are trained on the products or services of the brand that you offer, customers after their research are more informed about the other brands available. Shoppers tend to compare the products, and when your associate can’t deliver a satisfactory level of details, clients may choose other option.
What You Can Do About It: Adequate training of the store associates or salesperson is indispensable. Retail store owners are aware of it, but the training is usually restricted to products and solutions available under that roof.
They should emphasize on training on the competitor analysis as well. Moreover, the tech-enabled solutions with which they can track the availability of the products in the retail should be provided. At least being aware of the updated information on the inventory status can help the agents be more impressive to the client.
5. Mobile Payment Growth Is Expected To Increase At A Compound Annual Growth Rate Of 80%, Exceeding $500 Billion And 500 Million Users By 2019
What It Means: According to the report, mobile payment is witnessing a skyrocketing usage – not only in terms of the amount but also when you consider the total number of users. Almost all the popular mobile-based payment solutions, including Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, and Android Pay, has seen an overall growth from a user base of 20 million in 2015 to more than 150 million in 2017.
What You Can Do About It: If the users are willing to pay you via mobile phones, then there is no reason why you should not accept it. Most of the mobile wallet options are compatible with all the leading card issuers across the world and accepting such payment doesn’t require any hefty hardware investments. As they streamline the payment methods for better and faster processing, the overall user experience at the payment point can also be improved with such deployment.
You can check the full 2019 retail trends report (PDF) to understand these trends and stats in detail.
Delivering an excellent customer experience at a retail store or website is an ever-evolving process. The practices that do wonders today may be irrelevant tomorrow. However, if you are consistently following with the trends and utilizing them into your retail store practices, the chances are good that customers will find you impressive and stay loyal to your brand.
We would like to know the practices that you have adopted at your retail store to one-up the customer experience. You can post in the comments below. If you are interested in knowing how solutions of Ace Cloud Hosting can help you deliver better customer experience, then feel free to reach our solutions consultants for free consultation session now.