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Solving the In-Store Personalization Challenge

RIS News – Every savvy retailer knows just offering merchandise isn’t going to draw shoppers into stores today. For brick and mortar to thrive, stores need to offer a personalized customer experience that fosters loyalty between the shopper and the retailer. But how do you solve this seemingly simple, but extremely complex, challenge?

While there’s a plethora of ways to make shopping in stores more personal, one thing rings true for most shoppers. Eighty-seven percent of consumers indicate an interest in a personalized and consistent experience across channels, according to BRP’s 2019 Unified Commerce Survey.

“The growth of online and mobile is driving the demand for increased digital capabilities bundled with personalization across all channels,” said Perry Kramer, senior vice president and practice lead at BRP.

Knowing who the shopper is and when they are in your store is the foundation of providing personalized offers. And when it comes to physical stores, 68% of consumers would choose to shop at a store that offers personalized promotions and discounts over a store that doesn’t offer these services, according to the BRP Consumer Study.

Read Full Article: Solving the In-Store Personalization Challenge

Ecommerce experience heightening consumers’ retail expectations

Luxury Daily – Consumers’ shopping habits are increasingly cross-channel, but new research finds retailers are putting more emphasis on consistency of experience rather than the convergence of their digital and physical channels.

According to a report from Boston Retail Partners, 82 percent of consumers have browsed or researched online before heading to a store to make a purchase. The more educated, ecommerce-connected consumer has raised expectations for retailers, calling for brands to ramp up their offerings to remain competitive.

“Ecommerce and mobile commerce has put additional information and enhanced functionality into the hands of both customers and associates,” said David Naumann, vice president of marketing at Boston Retail Partners. “This, in turn, has increased customer expectations as she now has more shopping options than ever before with access to competitive pricing, greater merchandise assortments and faster delivery.”

Read Full Article: Ecommerce experience heightening consumers’ retail expectations

Ecommerce’s Effects Felt In Consumers’ Offline Shopping

PPAI Media – Ecommerce’s disruption of the shopping experience extends to brick-and-mortar purchases as well. A study conducted by retail management consulting firm BRP found that 82 percent of consumers shop and review products online before purchasing them in a store and warns that only 18 percent are focused on increasing the convergence of physical and digital shopping environments.

BRP’s research focuses on the customer journey as ecommerce has elevated consumers’ expectations of the shopping experience and retailers must now provide service anytime, anywhere and in any way customers desire. Consumers now have more shopping options than ever before with more competitive pricing, greater merchandise assortments and faster delivery.

“Since consumers use digital devices throughout the shopping journey to research product information, compare prices and read consumer reviews, providing as much relevant information via the retailer’s website helps keep customers loyal to the brand,” says Jeffrey Neville, senior vice president and practice lead at BRP. “As ecommerce continues to represent a greater share of retailers’ revenue mix, it is imperative that retailers continue to enhance their online capabilities to keep up with their competitors that are just a click away.”

Read Full Article: Ecommerce’s Effects Felt In Consumers’ Offline Shopping

82% of Consumers Shop and Review Products Online Before Purchasing in a Store, According to New BRP Report

59% of Retailers are Focused on Creating a Consistent Brand Experience Across Channels to Support Omni-channel Shopping Journeys

Boston, MA – June 5, 2019– The advent of e-commerce has elevated consumers’ expectations of the shopping experience and retailers must now provide service anytime, anywhere and any way customers’ desire. Consumers now have more shopping options than ever before with more competitive pricing, greater merchandise assortments and faster delivery to get their desired product wherever and whenever. This makes the customer journey more complicated than ever before.

“Since consumers use digital devices throughout the shopping journey to research product information, compare prices and read consumer reviews, providing as much relevant information via the retailer’s website helps keep customers loyal to the brand,” said Jeffrey Neville, senior vice president and practice lead at BRP.“As e-commerce continues to represent a greater share of retailers’ revenue mix, it is imperative that retailers continue to enhance their online capabilities to keep up with their competitors that are just a click away.”

Consumers now start and stop their shopping journey in different channels and frequently shop for the same product across different retailers, via mobile, online or in-store. The customer expects a frictionless shopping experience across an entire brand and doesn’t want disruptions as they cross individual channels or locations.

While 59% of retailers are focused on creating a consistent brand experience across channels, it is surprising that only 18% are focused on increasing the convergence of physical and digital shopping environments. This seems like a disconnect, as converged physical and digital shopping environments are necessary to create a consistent brand experience across channels.

According to BRP’s SPECIAL REPORT: The E-Commerce Effect, retailers indicate the following are top unified commerce priorities:

  • Create a consistent brand experience across channels (59%)
  • Improve the online experience (52%)
  • Improve personalization (45%)
  • Improve the mobile shopping experience (41%)

To download the complete Special Report: The E-Commerce Effect visit:

https://brpconsulting.com/download/2019-special-report-ecommerce/

The special report’s platinum sponsors are enVista and Kibo and the gold sponsors are Aptos, ECRS, Fujitsu, LS Retail and PCMS.

About BRP

BRP is an innovative retail management consulting firm dedicated to providing superior service and enduring value to our clients. BRP combines its consultants’ deep retail business knowledge and cross-functional capabilities to deliver superior design and implementation of strategy, technology, and process solutions. The firm’s unique combination of industry focus, knowledge-based approach, and rapid, end-to-end solution deployment helps clients to achieve their business potential. BRP’s consulting services include:

Strategy | Business Intelligence | Business Process Optimization | Point of Sale (POS)
Mobile POS | Payment Security | E-Commerce | Store Systems and Operations | CRM
Unified Commerce | Customer Experience | Order Management | Networks
Merchandise Management | Supply Chain | Private Equity

For more information on BRP, visit http://www.brpconsulting.com.

Data Segmentation Boosts Loyalty Success

Convenience Store Decisions – Analyzing customer data takes loyalty programs to a new level of personalization. Despite news of the recent Facebook data breach and other high-profile misuses, data is not something to be feared. It is something to be captured and used in a way that benefits both c-stores and the customers they enroll in loyalty programs.

“Analyzing customer data is the key to measuring the effectiveness of a loyalty program,” said Perry Kramer, senior vice president and practice lead at retail consulting firm BRP.  “In the last couple of years, there has been an increased willingness from consumers to provide their data as part of the enrollment process, as long as they perceive a value or reward for providing the data.” That reward goes beyond five cents off gas or a free soda.

“Data segmentation enables retailers to divide their customer base into groupings for data analysis and marketing campaigns,” Kramer said. “The most effective grouping of segments will vary across retailer types. If you are a c-store that sells pizzas or fresh food, it will differ from a c-store that has made-to-order breakfast offerings and from another that has a large beer cooler.”

Kramer recommends 10 or fewer data segments, focused on key store areas and purchase history.

“Understand and continually refine the segments to tailor the value proposition to maximize enrollment and active users,” Kramer said. “Smart marketers will build customized marketing campaigns by store, region or customer demographic, which enables retailers to spend marketing and margin dollars where they are most effective instead of spreading them across the entire customer base.”

Read Full Article: Data Segmentation Boosts Loyalty Success

Retail Tech and Privacy

CPS Media – The dystopian novel “1984” begins with the protagonist Winston Smith hiding from a device called a telescreen. The telescreen is a combination TV and surveillance camera that the book’s fictional government uses to constantly monitor its citizens. In author George Orwell’s nightmare world, everyday people can watch programs on the telescreens, but it is always watching them back.

What does this have to do with convenience stores? More and more every day. When “1984” was published in 1949, Orwell could not imagine that we would have the ability to immediately identify almost anyone using facial recognition technology. The possibility that we as consumers might soon be surrounded by such technology in retail and restaurant settings is very real.

On one hand, facial recognition devices such as this could be the next logical step in providing the level of service customers increasingly demand. After all, BRP, a Boston-based retail analysis firm, recently released a study claiming that 79% of consumers see personalized service as an important factor when deciding where to shop. Furthermore, the study found that 64% of consumers are comfortable with retailers identifying them with their mobile phones when they enter the store if they are offered a personalized experience in return.

Read Full Article: Retail Tech and Privacy

Survey: Do retailers meet customer mobile expectations?

Chain Store Age – A new survey from BRP, retail consulting firm, highlights how well retailers are aligning their mobile strategies with customer preferences. According to results from the “BRP Special Report: The Mobilization of Retail,” retailers are generally in sync with the broader trend of consumers performing more shopping activities via smartphone. Forty-one percent of consumers plan to increase their shopping frequency on their phone or tablet within two years, and a matching 41% of retailers plan to improve the mobile shopping experience to ensure they are meeting their customers’ expectations.

However, when it comes to more specific details of what mobile functionality retailers offer shoppers, the study reveals some disconnects. For example, while 67% of consumers are likely to shop with a retailer that offers mobile coupons instead of one that doesn’t offer them, only 40% of retailers indicate that offering coupons/ discounts is a key feature to offer on their mobile app/website.

Read Full Article: Survey: Do retailers meet customer mobile expectations?

How to Use Email Marketing Segmentation to Grow Your Business

Business 2 Community – If you asked customers what’s the one thing they want more of from retailers, they’d say personalized customer experiences. Customers don’t want to be seen as nameless faces in a sea of people; they want to be treated as individuals.

Ken Morris, Principal at Boston Retail Partners, explains personalization this way, “Effective customer engagement requires retailers to offer a personalized, relevant, compelling and consistent experience across channels.” He continues, “In today’s crowded and highly competitive market, personalization is a critical component for optimizing the customer’s shopping experience.”
Read Full Article: How to Use Email Marketing Segmentation to Grow Your Business

87% of Consumers Indicate an Interest in a Personalized and Consistent Experience Across Channels, According to New BRP Report

Only 28% of Retailers Currently Offer a Shared Cart Across Channels

Boston, MA – May 7, 2019– Consumers now start and stop their shopping journey in different channels, including online marketplaces and social media, and frequently shop for the same product across different retailers, both online and in the store. Consumers expect a frictionless shopping experience across an entire brand and they don’t want disruptions as they cross individual channels or locations. In fact, according to the recent BRP Consumer Study, 87% of consumers are interested in a personalized and consistent experience across channels. Today’s consumers expect their experience to be seamless as their “shopping cart” and browsing history follows them throughout their journey.

“The growth of online and mobile is driving the demand for increased digital capabilities bundled with personalization across all channels,” said Perry Kramer, senior vice president and practice lead at BRP. “To succeed in this demanding environment, retailers must undergo a transformation as they move to a true unified commerce approach to deliver the convergence of the digital and physical shopping experiences and create a holistic customer shopping experience.”

BRP’s 2019 Unified Commerce Survey of top North American retailers offers insights into the forces affecting the retail industry, the opportunities available for retailers and the future of retail.

The key findings in the 2019 Unified Commerce Survey:

The Mobilization of Retail

  • 64% of consumers choose a store based on product information availability via their mobile device
  • 41% of retailers plan to improve the mobile experience to ensure they are meeting their customers’ expectations

The E-Commerce Effect

  • 81% of consumers purchase online at least once per month and 89% browse online at least once per month
  • 71% of retailers plan to offer a live chat option on their website to enhance the online shopping experience within two years

The Changing Customer Experience

  • 68% of consumers would choose a store that offers personalized promotions/discounts over a store that doesn’t offer them
  • 68% of retailers need to improve their ability to utilize customer insight to meet their customers’ expectations

The Need for Unified Commerce

  • 87% of consumers are interested in a personalized and consistent experience across all channels
  • 71% of retailers plan to offer the ability to ‘start the sale anywhere, finish the sale anywhere’ to their customers

The Future of Retail

  • 57% of consumers would choose a store offering an automated returns process over one that doesn’t offer it
  • 38% of retailers plan to offer an automated returns process within two years to offer more self-service opportunities

To download the complete Unified CommerceSurvey, visit:

https://brpconsulting.com/download/2019-unified-commerce-survey/.

The Unified Commerce Survey platinum sponsors are enVistaand Kiboand the gold sponsors are Aptos, ECRSand Fujitsu, LS Retail, and PCMS.

About BRP

BRP is an innovative retail management consulting firm dedicated to providing superior service and enduring value to our clients. BRP combines its consultants’ deep retail business knowledge and cross-functional capabilities to deliver superior design and implementation of strategy, technology, and process solutions. The firm’s unique combination of industry focus, knowledge-based approach, and rapid, end-to-end solution deployment helps clients to achieve their business potential. BRP’s consulting services include:

Strategy | Business Intelligence | Business Process Optimization | Point of Sale (POS)
Mobile POS | Payment Security | E-Commerce | Store Systems and Operations | CRM
Unified Commerce | Customer Experience | Order Management | Networks
Merchandise Management | Supply Chain | Private Equity

For more information on BRP, visit http://www.brpconsulting.com.

[1]2019 Consumer Shopping Habits – The Generation Gap, April 16, 2019, https://brpconsulting.com/download/2019-consumer-shopping-survey/

Consumers Shop Differently – The Generation Gap

While the shopping journey varies depending on the customer, product and even season, there are similarities within generational groups. Digital Consumers (ages 18-37) have higher expectations for the retail experience than Traditional Consumers (ages 38+) and embrace the use of technology to make their research and buying process more convenient. Traditional Consumers are more focused on the basics of finding their desired product at the right price.

BRP surveyed 1,298 U.S. consumers to identify how and where they prefer to shop and which factors influence their shopping journey. The findings of the survey are covered in the 2019 Consumer Shopping Habits – The Generation Gap report.

As retailers plan their in-store, online and mobile shopping experience strategies, it is imperative that they align with the desires of their target audiences. Making every experience a positive one is also key, as nearly two-thirds of ALL consumers will stop shopping at a retail brand after one unsatisfactory experience.

DIGITAL CONSUMERS (ages 18-37)

As Digital Consumers research products, they seek out consumer reviews to make more educated purchase decisions. When choosing a store, 65% want the ability to receive personalized recommendations and 65% prefer the ability to pay via a mobile wallet or retailer app. Receiving merchandise quickly is important with same day delivery a reason to choose a store for 77% of these consumers. Digital Consumers are more likely than Traditional to share feedback on social media for both exceptional and unsatisfactory shopping experiences.

TRADITIONAL CONSUMERS (ages 38+)

Traditional Consumers focus on the basics when they shop – product availability and competitive pricing. While shopping for products, 63% choose a store based on the associates’ ability to order out of stock products. While they are more tolerant on the timing of deliveries, 86% will choose a store with free delivery over one that doesn’t offer this service. Traditional Consumers rarely share feedback on social media for any shopping experience, but for unsatisfactory experiences, 64% will contact the retailer to share their dissatisfaction.

For more information on the generation gap between Digital and Traditional Consumers, download the 2019 Consumer Shopping Habits – The Generation Gap report:

https://brpconsulting.com/download/2019-consumer-shopping-survey

I hope you enjoy this report.  Please share your comments below.

David

Downloads

2019 Unified Commerce Survey

87% of Consumers Want a Personalized and Consistent Experience Across Channels

Consumers now start and stop their shopping journey in different channels, including online marketplaces and social media, and frequently shop for the same product across different retailers, both online and in the store. Consumers expect a frictionless shopping experience across an entire brand and they don’t want disruptions as they cross individual channels or locations. In fact, according to the recent BRP Consumer Study, 87% of consumers are interested in a personalized and consistent experience across channels.

BRP’s 2019 Unified Commerce Survey of top North American retailers offers insights into the forces affecting the retail industry, the opportunities available for retailers and the future of retail.

The key findings in the 2019 Unified Commerce Survey:

The Mobilization of Retail

  • 64% of consumers choose a store based on product information availability via their mobile device
  • 41% of retailers plan to improve the mobile experience to ensure they are meeting their customers’ expectations

The E-Commerce Effect

  • 81% of consumers purchase online at least once per month and 89% browse online at least once per month
  • 71% of retailers plan to offer a live chat option on their website to enhance the online shopping experience within two years

The Changing Customer Experience

  • 68% of consumers would choose a store that offers personalized promotions/discounts over a store that doesn’t offer them
  • 68% of retailers need to improve their ability to utilize customer insight to meet their customers’ expectations

The Need for Unified Commerce

  • 87% of consumers are interested in a personalized and consistent experience across all channels
  • 71% of retailers plan to offer the ability to ‘start the sale anywhere, finish the sale anywhere’ to their customers

The Future of Retail

  • 57% of consumers would choose a store offering an automated returns process over one that doesn’t offer it
  • 38% of retailers plan to offer an automated returns process within two years to offer more self-service opportunities

Personalization is Key to Customer Loyalty

Personalization is Needed to Compete Against Amazon

As consumers become more technologically savvy and have access to better information, there is a widening gap as retailers struggle to meet consumers’ escalating expectations. Personalization is one of the best ways to create and maintain a connection with the brand’s most valuable and loyal customers. The 2018 Special Report – Personalization is Key to Customer Loyalty identifies how retailers are personalizing the shopping experience for their most valuable customers.

“Personalization is the best way for retailers to enhance the customer experience, especially for those customers who are already invested in your brand,” said Perry Kramer, senior vice president and practice lead at BRP. “Identifying and rewarding your most valuable customers with personalized offers and services is imperative to cultivating loyal, brand enthusiasts.”

The key customer loyalty trends identified in the study include:

Customer Identification and Incentives – To engage with customers on a personal level requires retailers to identify the customer early in the process at any touch-point.

• 53% of retailers extend specialized offers to encourage customers to identify themselves with personal information

Most Valuable Customers – With 80% of a retailer’s business typically coming from 20% of its customers, identifying your most valuable customers and understanding their shopping habits is critical to cultivating loyal, brand enthusiasts.

• 77% of retailers identify their most valuable customers, however, 69% of those feel the process needs improvement

Personalizing the Experience – Retailers that identify customers when they enter the store and equip their associates with the proper mobile tools can personalize the shopping experience based on customer context.

• 69% of retailers that identify their most valuable customers share this information with their associates, which represents missed opportunities for the 31% who don’t share customer information with associates.