Mood Media, a world-leading experiential media company that maximizes the customer experience and provides value for businesses and brands around the world, today launched its new global study, “Charting the trends in the store,” which highlights how creating the right atmosphere, incorporating the right digital technology and a commitment to sustainability are key to tapping into consumers’ ongoing appetite for in-store shopping.
The Mood Media report surveyed more than 12,000 shoppers in the US, UK, France, Spain, Germany, the Netherlands, and China. The report found that 30% of UK consumers are shopping in store more often now than they were two years ago, and 40% are shopping in store at the same level.
Forty-six percent of consumers say their desire to shop in person is based on having instant purchases in their hands, and 34% enjoy the element of discovery when shopping in person. Shopping as a leisure activity with friends and family was the third most cited reason for in-person visits (28%).
“There is no longer a debate about whether people will go back to physical retail after the pandemic,” says Scott Moore, global CMO at Mood Media. “They have returned. Now we need to focus on how best to harness the continued demand for ambient-rich, digitally enabled in-person experiences.”
What the right atmosphere can do
Key to the report’s findings, more than two-thirds of shoppers (71%) will prioritize physical purchases over e-commerce given a pleasant in-store environment. And once in the store, 72% of shoppers reveal that a pleasant atmosphere would make them stay longer, and 82% return to visit. 36% of consumers globally say that music in the store improves their mood when shopping, while 33% feel that a pleasant aroma does the same.
The evolving role of digital in the store
More than a third of shoppers now expect stores to invest in digital checkout and self-service technology, 41%, as well as interactive displays, 37%, allowing them to explore ranges and personalize services or products 39%.
The metaverse intrigues UK shoppers, with 33% expecting retailers to provide information on how to visit the retailer’s store in the metaverse or other virtual space.
Phygital, the fusion of physical and digital environments, is equally important, with 38% of shoppers expecting interactive digital displays or tablets that provide in-store access to the same search and discovery tools that are available online.
“As consumers return to physical stores in full force, what we see is that they return with evolved shopping habits and expectations. They now increasingly see both online and offline as part of the same buying process (not against each other), and due to their increasing comfort levels in the online space, they now expect similar levels of digital technology solutions. as an integral part of the physical space. space,” says Moore.
Take Action on Sustainability
Retail sustainability is a driving factor for shoppers globally, with 57% of shoppers indicating that these practices affect their willingness to stay longer, return to the store, tell friends and buy more.
Nearly half of buyers, 42%, want to be educated about the environmental qualities and characteristics of the products being sold. More than half of shoppers (55%) expect retailers to provide in-store recycling options, and most shoppers want retailers to reduce their energy use by closing doors in air-conditioned spaces, on 46 %, enclosing the refrigerated spaces and turning off the display lights. when closed, 43%.
Consumers are ready to lead by example and reward retailers for applying sustainable practices. 56% of shoppers globally say sustainability-conscious retailers would make it more likely that they would want to buy something.
How shoppers around the world differ when it comes to the in-store experience
Featured findings for different markets include:
– US and French consumers are leading the return to the high street with 48% and 44% of consumers going to the store more than two years ago, compared to 38% of the global average.
– Buyers in China lead in technology ambitions and desire for sustainable practices. 85% want to see self-service digital technology, AR and VR, compared to a global average of 57%. 85% also want sustainable retail practices, compared to a global average of 66%
– German shoppers are more likely to convert their sustainable convictions into purchases. 67% say they are more likely to buy from sustainable-minded retailers vs. a global average of 59%
– French shoppers lead Europe in wanting retailers to take environmental action. 65% want stores to close air-conditioned store doors and turn off lights when closed, 57% vs. 54% global average. They also lead Europe in wanting to see recycling options in stores, 66% vs. 61% global average.
– Shoppers in Spain do not like queuing in stores and are most put off by waiting in line, 63%, compared to 58% in the UK and 56% in France. Spain also leads the survey on the desire for stores to exchange items for both in-store and online purchases, with 40% versus a global average of 32%.
– Longer dwell times are the result of sales spaces that incorporate music playlists and branded scents. The top three countries where shoppers say they are more likely to stay longer when music and scents are on are Germany, 61%, Spain, 59%, and the US, 57%.
“Mood Media’s latest study shows how vital it is to balance digital with physical in stores today. Shoppers still expect a nice atmosphere, with good lighting, music, and things to touch and see. Also not to be underestimated are the trained staff and the ability to shop instantly or pick up orders online. But the growing importance of digital technology for self-service, engagement and interaction, and the adoption of sustainable products and practices have an increasing role to play in shoppers’ store choice, purchase intent and frequency. Knights says.