Today’s consumer has a different list of expectations and needs than a decade ago. The basic principles remain the same, the exact demands are different.
Knowing what your customer wants and needs is the first step to keep shoppers satisfied and leading your brand into the future.
What Shoppers Want in 2019
Consumers still demand a variety of products and services so they can peruse and compare, but they will want a reputable company to work with. However, there are some elements that have taken priority for both the current consumer and consumers of tomorrow.
The things today’s shopper wants most is:
- Personal Touch
While such needs can be clear, it’s tricky to find the best way to deliver. Here are four surefire ways to give your shoppers what they want, every single time.
Build Your Site and Apps from the Shopper’s Perspective
In creating your website and mobile app, put yourself in the consumer mindset. This will make it much easier for you to identify ways to create the ideal shopping experience for your audience.
- Think about how you shop online and what elements affect your purchasing decisions.
- Look back on your own positive and negative buying experiences.
- What aspects of the transaction made it good?
- Was there something that made it bad?
Use this information to improve your own website or mobile app.
According to recent research, 77% of those surveyed reported visiting a store’s sale section first, regardless of what they were shopping for. There is a growing demand for discounts and competitive pricing as modern consumers seek the best value pricing on almost all purchases.
We have known for years that sales and discounts are psychologically appealing to consumers, but today they are almost a necessary part of everyday business.
Your mobile app (and you DO need one) should enable hassle-free customer engagement. Think about your own favorite mobile shopping apps. Look at the elements of their design you most appreciate.
Mobile apps are no longer optional. They haven’t been for years. You need an app for your business, and you need one that is intuitive and user-friendly to deliver the best shopping experience every single time. Study up on mobile app development for 2019 to make sure yours hits the mark.
Get Personal with Your Customers
Today’s consumer has many expectations, but there is one that encompasses the entire shopping experience: a personal touch.
Consumers don’t want to feel like another number, even at major retailers. If you are a small business, it’s even more important to deliver that personal service. Look at the leading corporate social media brands right now.
Even though they are huge multi-national or international corporations using automation wherever they can, they present their social media profiles as an individual person or entity.
Don’t over-complicate this. It is as simple as it sounds. Stop looking at customers and cater to the customer. Keep a professional, yet personable, business brand and identity.
Make sure that your audience knows they can depend on you for personal service and support. Plus, if you want to meet the expectations of your shoppers, this is where you can find out what that means. How? Just ask them.
Make Returns and Refunds as Simple as the Initial Transaction
To increase the simplicity of your shoppers’ transactions, you need a user-friendly shopping cart and transaction process.
Make sure you have a website-friendly shopping cart for your traditional website AND a mobile-friendly cart for your mobile app. Think about your own online shopping experiences.
How many times have you gotten all the way to the “checkout” screen only to abandon ship because the cart was difficult to navigate or didn’t provide enough options?
Your return and refund procedures should be just as simple as the initial purchase. Don’t make users jump through hoops just because they made a mistake, changed their mind, or something was wrong with the item.
In the world of online shopping, the returns and refunds process is just as important to shoppers as the initial purchase. Make sure that yours is hassle-free and be sure to let shoppers know just how easy it can be.
Some business owners feel that suggesting refunds or returns to their customer sends out a negative message. However, what you are telling today’s consumer is that you value their business and want to ensure that they get what they need.
That includes offering hassle-free returns and refunds if your product or service doesn’t fit the bill. Again, it goes back to that personal touch.
Give Your Shoppers Plenty of Options
Part of the difficulty in creating the “perfect online marketplace” for shoppers is that they don’t all want the same things.
While 90% of shoppers prefer free delivery over fast delivery, that doesn’t mean some people won’t pay a premium to get something. The most successful online retailers, including Amazon, offer people a variety of payment and shipping options so they can find the combination that works for their needs.
According to research, 50% of shoppers reported abandoning their cart at the checkout because of a lack of shipping or payment options.
“For payment options, make sure you include some online payment providers for your customers”
These include PayPal, Venmo, and others. Despite the increasing regularity of online shopping, some people are still reluctant to provide credit card information. Plus, there are still many people who don’t have a traditional bank account or credit card to pay for products and services.
Consider mobile payment providers, such as Apple Pay, G Pay by Google, and Samsung Pay, besides mobile payment services.
The Bottom Line
Mobile applications are all about personalized shopping experience. Not only do these apps deliver convenience, but they provide shoppers with loyalty rewards programs, quick and easy access to the items they need, and plenty of shipping and payment options that can be integrated for user convenience.
If you keep the four elements discussed above in mind when developing your latest mobile app, you can guarantee you will exceed your shopper’s expectation every single time.