Discover the New High-Expectation Shopper

A study released by Mindtree provides critical insights into the evolution of the "phy-gital" shopper and the kinds of experiences and features that would encourage them to shop more. These phy-gital shoppers have a world of information at their fingertips and they're just as comfortable shopping online as they are in a retail store.

The independent study, "Discover the Phy-gital Shopper: A Survey by Mindtree," found that these high-expectation shoppers combine online and in-store experiences in whatever way is most convenient for them. Their behavior has flipped the traditional supply and demand model. With today's connected shopper, demand now discovers supply. At the hint of a need, this new breed of shopper interacts with various media and devices to find what they want. The paradigm shift is fueled by new technologies such as cloud apps, machine intelligence and connected smart devices.

The study surveyed 2,400 customers across the U.S., asking them to rate different online and in-store features covering apparel, electronics, grocery, and home and garden segments. Although shopper preferences and desires differed by market segment, five broad themes emerged that retailers will find useful:
  • U.S. shoppers expect a seamless experience across all channels - 60 percent say they combine online and in-store purchases
  • Shoppers want to take advantage of in-store technology - 33 percent want to use technology for locating products and self-checkout at kiosks for a faster shopping experience
  • Shoppers will share personal information, but not on social media - 90 percent are willing to share personal information for a better experience but only 4 percent want social networking with retailers
  • Shoppers want more information, whether online or in-store - 20 percent of grocery shoppers want recipe recommendations and product suggestions
  • Shoppers will spend more if they have a remarkable experience - 18 percent of apparel shoppers want to use technology to find out how crowded a store is
Doug Stephens, founder of Retail Prophet, said, "Until recently we have tended to view the dynamic between the web and physical stores as binary, with one format winning out over the other. This clearly isn't true. We will see ecommerce become increasingly physical, tactile and immersive, and the in-store experience significantly more web like, connected and data-rich. In fact, technology is rapidly driving the evolution of both formats. In time, the lines between the two formats will become so blurred it will be difficult to know if the retail experience we've just had was digital or physical."
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