Retailers and Shoppers at Odds Over In-store Tech
Oct 27

Retailers and Shoppers at Odds Over In-store Tech

The retail grocery industry is struggling to keep up with consumer behavior, and even more so when it comes to their expectations of the in-store experience.

Recent data from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) reveals that customers and retailers have very different ideas about what in-store technologies would enhance the shopping experience.

Nearly half of US internet users ages 18 and older said technology that helped them checkout more easily would be most helpful in-store.

However, only 28 percent of US retailers said the same. According to retailers, the ability to check other stores or online stock quickly would be most useful (36 percent).

Internet users ranked checking stock of other stores as the third-most useful in-store technology (30 percent). About 36 percent argued that real-time, personalized offers delivered to them as they entered the store would be better. Retailers ranked this technology second as well.

A March 2015 study by CFI Group underlines PwC’s findings: the checkout process was the top driver of customer satisfaction with retailers at 28 percent. This was even more important to consumers than price (26 percent).

85 percent of more than 1,000 internet users polled by Retale in April had used in-store self-service checkout kiosks. Customers prefer this option when they have few items or don’t want to wait in line—they want to speed up their checkout process.

Retailers should consider, then, that 41 percent of internet users said self-service kiosks could be better despite their convenience. The biggest issues according to Retale were scanning items (35 percent) and entering coupons (24 percent).

This isn’t surprising when retailers are already struggling with the acceptance of digital coupons at the traditional checkout. These findings emphasize that in-store technology is increasingly important—and it’s even more important that it works well.