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Consumers’ shopping experience expectations aren’t being met

Consumers’ shopping experience expectations aren’t being met

Author: Maria Alejandra Lopez 

Source: Buissnes Insider 

Many consumers feel that companies aren't delivering the best online shopping experiences possible, according to a study from Salesforce. Nearly two-thirds (64%) of global consumers said that their standards for good experiences are higher than they've ever been, and another 53% reported that most companies aren't meeting their expectations. Companies should focus on improving their experiences, not just to meet expectations, but also because 79% of consumers said that a company's experience is as important as its products and services.

ecommerce retail product categoryBI Intelligence

Companies should make sure they offer what's most important to consumers at each stage of the purchase process.

  • Before a purchase: Respondents were 2.4 times more likely to rate user-generated content as important rather than unimportant. This means that quality product reviews are a must-have, and finding ways to incorporate social media posts would also be valuable in building a great shopping experience. Additionally, consumers were 1.9 times more likely to say that personalized offers were important rather than unimportant, and 1.3 times more likely to say the same about personalized communications. Retailers should therefore keep their personalization efforts focused on transactions.
  • During a purchase: A product comparison tool was consumers' most important feature at this stage, with respondents being 5.7 times more likely to say that it's important instead of unimportant. Having tools that let consumers look at products, prices, and other details side by side should help create a better experience for consumers who are trying to make a decision. These tools could also increase the likelihood that a shopper will convert, since they won't need to go to other sites to compare products.
  • After a purchase: Consumers consider real-time messaging an important customer service option, so retailers and brands should create chatbots or teams of employees dedicated to such services. Providing this kind of service would give consumers what they want, and build a strong retailer-customer relationship that could lead to repeat purchases.

Each of the above stages needs to be connected in order for retailers to provide the best shopping experience. Sixty-seven percent of consumers said that connected processes are very important to winning their business, meaning that retailers need to make it easy to switch purchasing channels and have each subsequent step adapt based on what the consumer did in previous stages.

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