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Consumers To Retailers: We Want More Location Services

A survey finds more than half of customers believe that digital is improving their in-store experiences, but they’re far from satisfied.

Although most people don’t know what a beacon is, a majority of shoppers interviewed by  Zebra Technologies expressed interest in seeing place-based technology.

The findings are a part of Zebra’s “One Store” campaign, helping retailers unify the different arms of their businesses into one omnichannel experience.

In a survey of nearly 2,000 shoppers in the US, Canda, Singapore, Australia, England, Spain, Italy, France, Germany, China, Japan, and Thailand, Zebra found that some of the top most desired services that consumers want include mobile coupons and promotions, interactive/smart shopping maps, and digitally connected assistance from sales associates.

These are all features the industry has been integrating steadily over the last few years. Wanderful MediaModell’s, and Pinkberry are some of the companies we’ve covered who are delving into mobile coupons, while Coca-Cola has moved into beacons and mobile promotions. Google Maps has been leading the charge with mapping the interior of stores. Lowe’s is one of many stores giving its sales associates iPads to help customers search on the store floor and Gilt Groupe is inviting customers into its own offices to bridge the gap between its ecommerce and in-store showings.

“As online and mobile shopping become more prevalent and accepted worldwide, the importance of the customer experience remains high – as noted by the majority of respondents who would buy more merchandise from retailers they believe provide better customer service,” said Nick D’Alessio of Zebra’s Global Retail Solutions Department in a press release. “Mobile technology helps provide real-time visibility of product availability, flexible delivery and payment options – freeing retailers to focus on the shopper experience and delivering personalized service to customers.”

Bright Future

Brands and agencies who have been doing location-based services for a while will be happy to hear that their efforts have not been in vain. More than half of surveyed consumers feel positively about shopping in-store and believe that digital solutions are improving the in-store shopping experience.

Zebra's Nick D'Alessio
Zebra’s Nick D’Alessio

Some other key facts show that online and offline shopping experiences are still firmly intertwined.

  • 52 percent of shoppers “show-roomed” a product online before buying it in-store.
  • More than 3 in 10 consumers would prefer to pick up something they purchased online in-person.
  • Retailers can recover more than 66 percent of customer complaints due to products being out-of-stock by offering immediate in-store discounts.
  • 64 percent of shoppers would be willing to purchase more merchandise if they received better, more comprehensive customer assistance in-store.

Both customers who want location-based services and location-using brands that want those customers will be happy to hear that the two are coming together quite nicely. For those brands and agencies yet to step into the location game, let this serve as an open invitation: customers want geo-data and they want it in-store.

About The Author
Daniel Parisi Daniel Parisi @daniel_parisi_

Daniel Parisi is a New York City-based writer and recent graduate of the University of Maryland. Daniel specializes in coverage of mobile payments, loyalty programs, and the Internet of Things.