salesforce research

“Connected Shoppers Report,” Salesforce Research surveyed over 10,000 consumers worldwide to discover:

  • How retailers, brands, and online marketplaces differentiate in a crowded retail landscape
  • What drives shopper loyalty
  • How retailers can compete as shopping moves to emerging digital purchase points
  • The evolving role of the physical store
  • How shoppers will browse and buy during the 2019 holiday season

Retail continues to be an area where the consumer is king. Engagement channels are changing, tech enabled customer experience has never been more vital, and the battle between traditional retail and  online marketplaces is well and truly joined. 

Salesforce’s latest Connected Shoppers Report aimed to explore the relationship between bricks-and mortar and digital retailers – and found that while the former still has its place, the latter’s continued  dominance is undeniable. 

Of course, you may find yourself thinking otherwise while taking a trip down a High Street of any big city hand. Yet the reasons why this is the case range across the entire customer journey, as well as touching  on key demographics. 

According to the research, 86% of shoppers purchase from retailers, brands and online marketplaces.  Salesforce puts this understandable approach due to converging interests for consumers; the retailer can  offer strong customer service, loyalty and rewards, the brand has product customization and authenticity,  while the online marketplace offers variety in terms of price and convenience. 

When it comes to the various experiences for product differentiation, younger consumers are more likely  to subscribe. The one constant across generations, however, is loyalty programs, cited by more than 70%  across all sectors. For limited edition, or customized products, under a third (30%) of boomers polled said  it would increase their likelihood to buy, compared with 66% and 72% for millennials and Gen Z-ers  respectively. 

More than half (57%) of shoppers said they tend to shop with a specific brand in mind, according to the  research. This can be reciprocal: the top trait of consumers’ favourite brands was that they catered to  unique needs – followed by exclusive offers and promotions. 

The report explores how shopper journeys are moving to the edge, with on average eight different  channels being used to communicate with companies. This is placed in three buckets; discovery and  evaluation, buying, and service. However, when it comes to the most emerging touchpoints, such as visual  search, video chat and livestreams, Generation X and millennials are ahead of Gen Z when it comes to  adoption. 

“This year’s Connected Shopper Report highlights the importance of convenience and the growing  maturity of propositions to give retailers a competitive edge,” said Jamie Merrick, Salesforce director of  strategic solutions. “Our research shows that on average, customers use eight channels to communicate  with brands, so the nirvana for retailers is having a 360-degree view which gives them visibility of every  touch point. 

“Regardless of the channels they are using, the success of retailers still relies on having the right strategy  in place when it comes to their product, pricing, and service offering,” added Merrick. “Achieving the right  balance in terms of their core proposition and Omni-channel approach means retailers will continue to  attract and retain customers.” 

Read the full report by SalesForce.

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