In-Store Trends: Analyzing Evolving Customer Expectations of Physical Retail

COVID-19 changed the way we sell, consume and trade physical goods permanently. To dig into the depths of this, Mood Media has published In-Store Trends: Analyzing Evolving Customer Expectations of Physical Stores October 2022 report. The study, which surveyed more than 12,000 global consumers, found that many have returned to store shopping at or exceed pre-pandemic levels. The findings focused on the finer details, such as the music played in the store and the scent of a store, that influence the time consumers spend browsing. These are the key points of the report:

  • 84% of US consumers say stores with a friendly atmosphere are more likely to drive repeat visits, and 90% say it makes them stay longer.
  • A friendly environment would make 86% of US shoppers recommend a store to others and 83% would choose to go to a physical space instead of shopping online.
  • 71% of consumers around the world say they now shop in physical stores as often or more often than before the pandemic.
  • Engaging digital content and personalized experiences have the greatest impact on purchasing decisions for US consumers, with 31% and 40%, respectively, wanting to buy something in a store.
  • 40% of consumers around the world consider a pleasant scent to be an important factor in creating a pleasant experience in health and beauty stores.
  • 70% of US consumers say that sustainable practices and/or the sale of sustainable products are important to them when they choose to visit a physical store; 55% say this would also make them more likely to want to buy something.
  • The top three criteria for a pleasant in-store experience for US auto consumers are friendly and knowledgeable staff, interactive digital displays that provide information, and the ability to see, touch and smell.
  • 58% of US shoppers say music playlists and branded scents would make them stay in a physical store longer.
  • 47% of shoppers globally would leave a store due to an unpleasant odour.

“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 Scott Moore, global CMO, Mood Media.

Speaking about the influence of digital retail on the store space in the report, Miya Knights, author, consultant and retail editor, writes: “Without a doubt, stores still play a critical role in consumers’ shopping journeys. But striking the right balance between interaction, experience and self-service, as well as instant gratification and sustainability, will ensure that stores remain indispensable well into the future.”

For retailers and brands to maintain successful relationships with consumers, they must now be prepared to go the extra mile to meet customers’ buying habits and expectations. From advanced digital aspects of the store to simple elements like the scent of the store, there is a lot to consider. Look at this commercial space.

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