These are the nation’s biggest shopping gripes
| 8th October 2019
Stores being too hot or cold, the returns counter located on a different floor – and overpowering smells are among the nation’s biggest shopping gripes.
A new study has found the aspects of modern retail spending which irk customers the most, including the layout of a shop changing, broken contactless card machines and even no Wi-Fi in store.
For shopping online, 45 per cent named slow web pages to be their biggest bugbear, alongside products looking different when they arrive and having to wait for refunds.
But while clothes shopping in-store irritates 31 per cent of the nation, just one in 10 feel the same way when purchasing online.
An annoyed 57 per cent even said they have walked out of a shop without buying what they went in for, because they were so fed up.
Mark Howley, UK CEO of Starcom, which commissioned the research as part of it’s ‘Future Tensions in Retail’ report said: “This research defines a cultural shift and insights into consumers for brands around the future of retail.
“Shopping should be an enjoyable experience with interactive areas to enhance this and we predict the way people shop will develop greatly over the next few years, as it already has done up until now.
“Some brands are already delivering this kind of enhanced experience for consumers.
“Topshop recently launched an immersive experience in its flagship store encouraging customers to touch displays, take pictures and relax on the soft furnishings.
“And Samsung’s new experiential store in Kings Cross allows customer to experience its products, attend masterclasses and provide the consumer with key information by the tech experts.”
The study also found one in five have had a disagreement with a member of staff due to being annoyed when shopping, and this has led to three in 10 deciding to shop online instead.
A sixth admitted they feel stressed and frustrated when clothes shopping specifically, while one in 10 find themselves ‘bored’.
But more than a third view shopping as an ‘experience’ and aspects which make a great store were found to be attractive interior, plants and even ‘Instagram-able’ spaces.
It also emerged that a quarter of shoppers would like to see apps which allow you to scan items to avoid having to wait at the checkout, while one in 10 would even like to to have AI-powered shop assistants.
And with the average shopper starting to feel ‘impatient after queuing for 10 minutes, it’s no surprise 44 per cent would like to see waiting times improved in the future.
Another two in five want prices of products lowered.
More than a third would like to see packaging to be more environmentally friendly with one in five taking into consideration whether items are produced ethically when buying them.
A quarter of those polled who want to buy new things, they also want to help the planet and be sustainable.
The study also found that almost a third believe shops are ‘important’ to their local community and three in 10 think the traditional high street filled with independent stores will return sometime in the future.
To encourage this, nearly a third believe encouraging online retailers to put events on in store or host pop-ups will help it thrive.
But if they could only shop one way in the future, 26 per cent would opt for online while just 24 per cent would opt to go in-store.
This is due to a sixth liking the idea of not having to leave the house, more than a third enjoy having online discounts and 37 per cent believing they are able to brands they don’t have in stores nearby.
On the other hand, two thirds like to actually see a product before purchasing, three in five want to be able to hand pick items and one in five enjoy talking to staff.
Mark Howley added: “These stats only reinforce that brands need to start offering an even more thrilling and enjoyable experience to the shopper, aside from just a good product.
“Brands need to think about the customer retail journey, what can you offer them to get them in store that you can’t get online?
“You need to think about what you can offer in terms of exclusivity, building hype around product drops, offering the Instagram photo-opp, from a fancy wall to some type of entertainment, or even an immersive sensory experience.