Overall, shoppers are committed to the shopping experience retailers provide, and not just the consumer goods themselves. Prior to this global pandemic, it was common to see retailers fiercely competing to consistently have shoppers purchasing from their business as opposed to their competitors. If a customer needed to purchase canned wet food for cats, they probably could have chosen between several retailers. While some of the availability of specific products has changed, consumers still have a plethora of options to choose from, from brick and mortar stores like Walmart and Kroger to digital platforms like Amazon.
Our data around COVID shows that over half of 16,019 U.S. respondents surveyed by Premise Data on April 28, 2019, are still finding it ‘difficult’ or ‘very difficult’ to find their desired foods and goods. Due to these shortages of products happening across the country many shoppers are venturing outside of their typical stores to find the products they require which provide a surprising opportunity for businesses to excel at serving their customers and building brand loyalty.
Customer experience is synonymous with providing a thoroughly wholesome and satisfactory shopping experience to consumers. This is where customer experience brings the physical together with the digital so that retailers can closely interact with their customers at every step of their shopping experience. If retailers wish to keep their customers, they need to offer top digital and physical customer experience so that the customers are not dissatisfied at any point.
As consumer shopping trends shift with COVID-19, customer experience still remains important. Consumers are looking for businesses that are making changes to accommodate customers during this difficult period, many stores are finding ways to incorporate social distancing, provide alternative products and hours of operation for vulnerable populations. It’s likely that customers are going to be more inclined to shop where they feel safe and feel that the business is taking appropriate precautions.
Growing Trends for Customer Experience and the Grocery Business
Customers’ experience is what grows your retail business. Noticing customer issues and resolving them increases your revenue over time by building loyal customers. When there isn’t much difference in the products being sold going the extra mile to satisfy customers is what really stands out. Here are a few top current trends related to customer experience that can help your grocery business:
- Customers seek experiences, not products. Their loyalty does not remain with the products they purchase; it remains with how well your retail business serves them and fulfills their needs. You can design tremendous in-store experiences for your customers to encourage them to engage your brand for as long as possible.
- With COVID-19 speed is more important than ever. There are varying levels of comfort when it comes to in-store shopping and businesses that offer avenues for consumers to get groceries quicker and easier are going to leave a lasting impression. Services like curbside pick-up, grocery delivery, and buy online and pick up in-store really demonstrate a commitment to the consumer.
- This is the age of technology. Today, customers seek a pleasurable and comfortable shopping experience, which often translates into WiFi availability. But other features that are helpful for customers include mobile apps that tell customers where to find products, digital coupons and the ability to self-checkout.
- Shoppers generally prefer to check the prices of products through a machine as opposed to asking store associates. Invest in essential technology for your stores, such as digitally interactive displays or built-in apps so that shoppers can comfortably find answers to product and price related questions.
As we navigate these challenging times its important to continue to monitor and understand your business and the perception of it. Premise is here to help you understand quickly changing consumer behavior and perceptions. Get in touch at [email protected] and we can assist you in getting the critical information you need to understand what’s happening and make decisions for your company.