Consumer Study: 63% Of Online Shoppers Expect Three-Day Delivery As Standard

Shoppers are looking beyond cost when making e-Commerce purchasing decisions, according to the 2018 Consumer Trends Report from Kibo. While price is still the most important factor for 61% of shoppers, its share has fallen from 70% in 2017. At the same time, a small but growing portion of shoppers rate other factors as more important:

  • Speed of fulfillment (8%, up from 2%);
  • Online shopping experience: (8%, up from 4%); and
  • Variety of fulfillment options: (7%, up from 4%).

Flexibility and speed are particularly important purchase influencers: 40% of shoppers say taking more than two days for delivery would prevent them from making a purchase, while 63% expect delivery within three days as the standard. Making a variety of delivery options visible early in the shopper journey also is important: 76% of shoppers say having multiple fulfillment options influences their purchasing decision, up from 64% in 2017. The findings are similar to the results of the Retail TouchPoints 2018 Last Mile Survey, which reported that 65% of consumers want greater shipment flexibility and 61% want faster deliveries.

“What we’ve been seeing is a shift towards convenience and a shift towards the experience portion of the buying cycle,” said Tushar Patel, CMO at Kibo in an interview with Retail TouchPoints. “As a consumer, the importance of the experience with my retailer, the experience I have online and the experience of receiving my items have gone up compared to price being the major factor.”

Usage of buy online, pick up in-store (BOPIS) services remains strong, and more than 66% of shoppers have chosen this option in the past six months. Avoidance of shipping fees is the most common reason, cited by 86% of shoppers, up from 79% in 2017. Other top reasons include:

  • Flexible pick-up times (85%, up from 78%);
  • The ability to touch and try merchandise (77%, up from 68%); and
  • Saving time at the store (76%, up from 71%).

When Shoppers Have A Product In Mind, They Visit Retailer Sites First

The most popular first stops for customers still researching brands or products are either a search engine (69%) or Amazon (61%). However, when a shopper knows what product and brand they want, 65% prefer going directly to a retailer’s web site. Other common destinations include:

  • A major retail store (47%);
  • A branded manufacturer’s web site (31%); and
  • An online marketplace (27%).

 

In comparison, when a shopper has a product in mind, but not a brand, their preferred channels are:

 

  • A retailer’s web site (66%);
  • A major retail store (41%);
  • An online marketplace (26%); and
  • A branded manufacturer’s web site (25%).

 

Retailers can use search engine optimization (SEO) to attract consumers to their web sites, but more work is needed to turn those visits into purchases. Approximately 87% of shoppers are influenced by peer reviews, and 91% have relied on reviews to make a purchasing decision in the past six months.

 

While 74% of shoppers are still somewhat, very or extremely influenced by interactive content that informs them about a product, that total is down from 92% in 2017. However, this doesn’t mean interactive content is becoming less important; rather, it indicates that shoppers need information to be tailored to them to drive engagement.

 

“When you’re catering to an individual’s intent and behaviors and their preferences, that’s when you’re really going to get the engagement,” said Patel. “What we’ve seen for retailers, and manufacturers as well, is when they’re driving individualized interactive content, that’s when you can get the most bang for your buck.”

 

Home Page Personalization Influences 63% Of Shoppers

 

Personalization can have a significant impact on purchasing decisions, but the most effective methods are changing. Approximately 63% of shoppers have been influenced by personalized recommendations on a homepage, down from 88% in 2017, while 50% of shoppers have been influenced by shopping cart recommendations, down from 93%. The influence of personalization is rapidly growing on the product page itself: 64% of consumers are influenced by recommendations there, up from 19% in 2017.

 

These results imply that many shoppers already know what they want by the time they visit a retailer’s web site and are skipping directly to the purchase. Retailers must make sure the checkout process remains simple even as they add personalization at the tail end of the buying journey: 78% of consumers say a simple, streamlined shopping cart influences their completion of a purchase.

 

“If you see what’s happening with mobile, see what’s happening with voice-enabled devices, experience is key,” said Patel. “No one buys on Alexa because it’s necessarily a cheaper way of doing it, but because the experience of buying is frictionless. Consumers are going to go towards the most friction-free way to shop whenever they’re given the option.”

 

NRF 2018: Retail Personalization Reaches A Crossroads

The National Retail Federation Big Show jammed the Javits Center with people, technology and excitement from January 14 to 16, and Retail TouchPoints was there in force. In addition to conducting video interviews, our team of editors met with retailers, analysts and solution providers to get a line on the biggest trends that will be shaping retail in 2018.

Visit the #NRF2018 hub for our complete coverage.

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RSP17 Recap: Making Personalization Practical And Effective

The Retail TouchPoints Retail Strategy & Planning (RSP17) webinar series aired live last week, and all 10 webinars are now available on demand. Three of the sessions focused on the hot topic of personalization, providing practical advice on how to:

• Use basic personalization techniques to boost KPIs like conversions and click-through rates;

Maximize the impact of product recommendations by sending them when shoppers are most receptive to selling suggestions; and

Achieve true individualization by creating detailed, data-rich customer profiles and using them to influence shopper behavior in real time.

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VOLT Lighting Launches Upgraded E-Commerce Site

VOLT Lighting, the leading factory-direct lighting manufacturer, launched its new e-Commerce sitepowered by the Kibo e-Commerce solution.

In upgrading its site, Voltlighting.com aims to provide the tools and advice needed to simplify and streamline the landscape lighting selection process, allowing customers to find inspiration, learn techniques, quickly locate products and successfully install their lighting vision.

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Whole Foods Leverages Customer Data To Improve Merchandising

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1wholefoods1Whole Foods Market has partnered with dunnhumby to help evolve its category management and merchandising through customer data and insights. By leveraging data-driven, customer-led insights, Whole Foods will be positioned to enhance the shopping experience by helping customers find the products, services, brands and flavors most relevant to their needs.

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Personalized Home Page Promos Influence 85% Of Shoppers

Personalizing the consumer experience can have a significant impact on the path to purchase, and the effects start the second a would-be shopper enters an e-Commerce site. Personalized home page promotions influence 85% of consumers, while personalized shopping cart recommendations influence 92% of shoppers to complete a purchase, according to research from Kibo.

Less influential personalization techniques include loyalty discounts (55%) and targeted recommendations on product pages (44%).

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NRF17 Sessions: The Benefits Of Radical Retailing

1-NRF17-View-from-Walmart 2049 1500pxFrom social to AI to VR, these sessions showed why retailers must be on the cutting-edge to engage and keep pace with today’s savvy shoppers.

Social And The Art Of The Influencer 

This session discussed why partnering with key influencers to engage audiences has become an essential component of retail marketing. The panel featured Vicki Cantrell, Former SVP of Communities and Executive Director, Shop.org; Melissa Davis, EVP and General Manager, Shopstyle; and Abigail Posner, Head of Strategic Planning — The Zoo, Google. 

Key takeaways:

  • It’s not about how many followers a potential influencer has; it’s about whether or not your brand will resonate with their audience;
  • Before working with an influencer, define your own goals to make sure that person is a fit for your brand;
  • Authenticity is crucial: Let influencers have some creative power because they know their audience best;
  • The most effective brands are the ones that create a human relationship with a consumer; and
  • Empower your employees to become brand ambassadors, or influencers, for your company. 

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