A new report from the Berekely Research Group reveals how consumer concern about inflation and fluctuating levels of Covid across the US could impact spending behavior. One attending-grabbing stat suggests almost a quarter (24%) will shop entirely online this holiday season.
Greg Rutan, VP of Sales commented;
This is an interesting report from Berkeley Research Group. The concerns over rent protection and the end of federal assistance are leaving some consumers wary of spending. And as has been discussed in numerous other posts and blogs, the importance of having both an omnichannel presence AND distribution strategy is critical. Pair that with real concerns about supply chains and potential for further disruptions as Covid continues to come in waves will require retailers, service providers, and many more to stay ahead of these trends and be nimble in their strategies.
Beyond these pressing concerns, there’s a renewed emphasis on what this all means for shopping – especially for the upcoming holiday season. Will we see lower spending due to economic concerns? Will stores be able to keep up with demand for key items while facing supply chain and distribution issues? Can retailers react quickly to the fact that even more consumers plan to do most of their shopping and/or research online? Among the many notable pieces in this report is that 51% of shoppers plan to use retailers’ mobile apps to research and make purchases. Those retailers without user-friendly apps may see a decline in revenues if they are unable to offer a compelling mobile experience.
So much continues to change, but some themes are becoming even more solid. Demographics tie into types of consumers and therefore their unique expectations. For those retailers who have customer data, the importance of doing a customer segmentation analysis cannot be overstated. And for those who have done so already, if you have not updated it very recently, you absolutely should. By understanding the key demographics, lifestyle segmentation, and then adding in new analyses such as geosocial profiling, retailers can understand their core consumer groups, and how they need to be engaged. Having varied and flexible strategies to engage those customers, where and how they want, will continue to drive retention and spend.
Read the report and take what you can from it. While things are still evolving, and uncertain, retailers can take steps now to protect their brands, sales, and customers.