Survey: Store retailers leaving money on table

Disappointing shopping experiences are costing brick-and-mortar retailers serious money.
That’s according to the recent TimeTrade State of Retail 2017 survey, whose results suggest that U.S. retail stores left about $150 billion in potential revenue on the table in 2016 by failing to offer shoppers the personalized shopping experiences they want.   
Respondents said that, on average, they would increase their in-store spending by 4.7% if they received better, more personalized service from retailers.   
“Just imagine the positive financial impact on brick-and-mortar retailers if revenue jumped by 5%,” said Gary Ambrosino, CEO of TimeTrade. “A renewed focus on providing shoppers with a better, more personal in-store experience would go a long way toward stemming the tide of defection to competitors and online sellers.”
Nearly half (49%) of  survey respondents said they “never” or only “sometimes” receive what they consider to be personalized service. In fact, 70% of the time they shop they said they “never” or only “sometimes” can find a sales associate when they need assistance. Seventy-one percent of consumers surveyed said they sometimes or always abandon dressing rooms and leave stores if they can’t obtain help with sizes, color, etc. 
On the other hand, 88% said that when helped by knowledgeable associates they are “somewhat likely” or “extremely likely” to make the purchase.
Despite the continued growth of online shopping, 82% of respondents said they still do half or more of their shopping in physical stores (excluding grocery stores). Even when an item is available online — as well as in a nearby store — 75% respondents said they preferred to buy from the physical store.
When asked what they value most when shopping in a retail store, respondents cited prompt service (47.3%), personalized experiences (26.2%) and smart recommendations (17.2%) the most. To improve service, 64% said they would like to schedule in store appointment (from any device) with a retail associate at a time most convenient to them.
MILLENNIALS: Millennials said they would enjoy improved shopping experiences if provided personal assistants/shoppers (45%), beacon technologies (31%), and organized systems with wait-time displays and text/email updates when their turn is near (29%).
“In store shopping is far from dead — but it does have to change to keep up with the trends,” Ambrosino said. “These survey results show that people definitely like shopping in stores so they can touch and feel products, and because they enjoy receiving prompt, personalized service. The key to success for brick-and-mortar retailers is to fully utilize their existing staff and relentlessly focus on providing personalized service to every customer across the board and capture that additional revenue, instead of letting those dollars go elsewhere.”
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