Offering consumers a multichannel shopping experience whereby they can buy goods from bricks-and-mortar stores or order them for delivery services to send to their home is an increasingly important part of providing an acceptable retail service to modern customers, a new report has found.
However, the Shopping in a Multichannel World report from consumer behaviour research company Shoppercentric also found that the high street experience continues to be an integral part of the average person's shopping experience.
While 62 per cent of the younger generation of consumers aged between 18 and 24 are in favour of new technology as a means to buy items and order them for delivery, 46 per cent of this group also remain fond of the social experience of going shopping, possibly indicating that high street shopping will need to adapt to become more of a social activity than a primary consumer destination.
Furthermore, 42 per cent of respondents said they had used a desktop computer to purchase something over the past month, with 55 per cent utilising a laptop or netbook, 23 per cent using catalogues, 13 per cent on smartphones and seven per cent making use of a tablet computer.
Danielle Pinnington, managing director of Shoppercentric, argued that new technology channels are altering shopping behaviours in a number of interesting ways.
She noted that the flexibility of these new mediums is making it far easier for consumers to choose how they want to purchase products and how they wish to access shops.
"Yet retailers and brands have tended to compartmentalise - thinking of shoppers who shop versus shoppers who go online. They've even structured themselves so that the shops are managed by one team and the online by another - very few have successfully merged the two," explained Ms Pinnington.
The IMRG-Experian Hitwise Hot Shops List recently revealed that multichannel retailers such as John Lewis are continuing to dominate the online sales market.
Author: Paul Burn