The modern shopper is getting savvier

24th July 2015
From Chris Morrison

Consumers are now demanding more information than ever. The growth of the internet and the spread of mobile devices mean that information on almost any subject is at our fingertips. This is revolutionising the way that people work, play and shop.  According to research from PWC we are entering an “Age of Disruption,” where retailers that deliver a customised experience to consumers across all devices will be the most successful. The pace of change shows no signs of slowing, and retailers and manufacturers need to keep abreast of the shifting demands of an increasingly “savvier” shopper to keep ahead of the competition.

Technology change is driven by the consumer

Mobile devices like tablets and smartphones are already used for comparing prices in store and online, but will play an even greater role in the years to come. While social media has been recognised as a marketing and customer service channel by retailers such as Tesco, it will increasingly become a shopping method. For example, Pinterest has now added a buy button meaning retailers will be better able to convert consumer impulses into purchases. Social media will be key to appealing to the “latte” generation, who want to know that products are local, authentic, traceable, transparent and ethical before purchasing. The food industry can ensure key information on food products is shared to all devices and via all channels, informing the consumer purchasing journey and maximising sales opportunities.

 

The Information Age

At the same time, with an ever-expanding amount of information that must be shared throughout the supply chain, harnessing this data correctly is becoming a competitive advantage. Complete transparency in the supply chain will not only help retailers and manufacturers innovate in driving new products to market to meet new consumer demands. It will also help ensure they remain flexible as new ways of shopping appear. By working more closely with manufacturers and suppliers, retailers can create greater efficiencies that lead to products being delivered to market more quickly and appeal to new consumer tastes as they emerge. Responding effectively with more tailored products in shorter time frames will allow retailers to better capitalise on new opportunities and strengthen their relationship with customers.

The future holds a sea change for the retail industry. By creating the right level of transparency into processes and being able to effectively share information in real-time, retailers and manufacturers can make sure they keep afloat when the tide changes.

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