What the holidays have in store for retailers, how digital technologies are changing the traditional path to purchase, why retailers and consumers may be missing the mobile connection, what consumers would rather do than talk to a sales associate, and more—welcome to this week’s edition of Retail Technology News, a weekly wrap-up from Quantum Retail of some of the top stories in the retail industry. Here’s what was news last week:
Ecommerce, Online, and Brick-and-Mortar Retail
The average person celebrating Christmas, Kwanza and/or Hanukkah will spend $804.42, up nearly 5% from 2013, according to the National Retail Federation’s 13th annual Holiday Consumer
Spending Survey. Consumers will spend more on
gifts for family and friends this year, but about the same amount as last year on traditional items such as decorations and food.
Thanks to digital devices, the path to purchase
starts long before consumers step foot in-store. Still, brick-and-mortar is far from dead, as evidenced by a June 2014. Among digital shoppers worldwide, 72% said the traditional store experience was important when making a purchase—the highest percentage out of locations and channels studied.
Infographic: It’s time to wake up to the future of commerce (The Future of Commerce)
According to the “State of The American Consumer” for 2014, part of an ongoing study of American consumers from 2008 to the present, conducted by Gallup, customers who are fully engaged represent an average 23% premium in terms of share of wallet, profitability, revenue and relationship growth over the average customer. And companies that engage both consumers and employees see a 240% boost in performance-related outcomes.
A record 44% U.S. holiday shoppers will go online (Internet Retailer)
44% of the average consumer’s shopping will be on the web, compared with about 40% last year, according to a survey released today by the National Retail Federation. That proportion, which includes browsing sessions where shoppers don’t make a purchase, is the highest since at least 2006, when the NRF first asked the question.
Online continues to replace in-store browsing (RetailWire)
Whether through a laptop at work or a smartphone before bed or in-store, online searches continue to replace much of the shopper discovery process that comes from in-store browsing. Today’s digital consumers — “the most connected ever” — are shopping earlier in the holiday season, using online video to help with research and turning to smartphones as personal shopping assistants.
Mobile Commerce and Payments
Millennials are the apple of seemingly every marketer’s eye, and mothers in the coveted demographic are esteemed for their role as household decision makers. Millennial moms — women aged 18-34 with at least one child at home — tend to have higher rates of device ownership than average, with 85% having a smartphone and 43% a tablet in the U.S.
What’s Next In Retail Payment (Retail TouchPoints)
The race to replace cash has spawned a crowded landscape of innovative payments technologies, from wearable devices to chip-enabled cards. But while some seem better suited to a sci-fi flick than a retail store, others are fast gaining a foothold in the mainstream market.
Most retailers losing the speed game with mobile shoppers (FierceMobileIT)
Shoppers are in more of a hurry than ever before, especially when it comes to mobile shopping. And the unfortunate reality for many retailers is that their online pages are just too slow for the mobile crowd. That is one of the findings of the new Radware study, “2014 State of the Union: Mobile Ecommerce Performance,” which looks at how consumers perceived their mobile shopping experience.
Mobile Shoppers & the Need to Chat, Tap or Talk (MediaPost)
The majority (62%) of online shoppers expects live mobile chat to be available and most (82%) said they would use it, based on a survey of 2,100 consumers. The survey found that 75% of consumers would rather use live online chat than speak to a person. Previous studies have shown that a large number of in-store shoppers would rather use their mobile device to get product information than deal with a salesperson.
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