What shoppers want from company website and social media


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What shoppers want from company website and social media

  1. 1. on shopping in evolutionBrace yourselves: men discover mobile shopping Stop faking it: get real with your shoppers It’s all about me now (not you): shoppers dictate the rules of engagement
  2. 2. Welcome to another edition of ‘Windows’ - a series of online reports from shopperresearch specialists Shoppercentric. In each issue we research a hot topic ofrelevance to retailers and manufacturers and analyse the issues involved. For our latest Windows report we turn our attention to the changes taking place in the retail sector, with social media and mobile commerce driving whole new opportunities for the businesses involved in retail. We look at how these communication trends are impacting on shopper behaviour, and offer a perspective on how businesses should grasp the opportunities.B ased on 1,000 interviews with UK adults who have access to the internet for personal use and use social media nowadays, together with focus groupsand expert interviews, we aim to provide a new perspective on the commercialimpact of the changes taking place.This ezine is designed to give you some of the overall themes and insightsfrom our study. If you would like further information, or to have access tothe full report, please email: evolution@shoppercentric.com 2 Windows 10
  3. 3. CONTENTS The Gender Divide 4 Brands Finding a Voice 7 It’s About More Than a Sale 10Windows 10 3
  4. 4. The GenderDivideS hould we be surprised that boys will be boys and girls will be girls? Probablynot, but this isn’t just about knowing there is If we focus on the boys first, we see that they are not only playinga gender divide, it is about businesses with their mobile devices, theunderstanding the nature of it and building earlier adopters are already usingthe learnings into targeted marketing plans. these tools to make shopping a more positive experience. GivenIn the context of our research the genderdivide can be defined as follows: we know that 31 percent of men Boys are playing with the toys – 38 find shopping a chore, who wouldpercent having a smartphone (compared to have thought that we would29 percent of women) associate men with positive The girls are getting sociable – 60percent using Facebook (compared to 52 shopping experiences!percent of men) The beauty of smartphones is that they allowThe use of social networking and mobile boys to do what they do best – investigate /commerce in the business context is still in its explore – in the context of physical stores.early stages of development. Yet, as these Those using smartphones are getting out offigures are suggesting, even now businesses the house and hitting the shops. Once thereshould take account of the gender divide within they are using the connectivity of their mobilethe approaches they take to these new media. devices to give them all the advantages of the internet, but in bricks & mortar stores. 4 Windows 10
  5. 5. Young men in particular are excited about For women sociability is the key. the potential of mobile commerce. They see We’ve always known that this is a it as putting knowledge at their finger tips, and giving them immediate feedback that fundamental part of shopping for empowers their purchase process. They now women, with 22 percent of women have the ability to compare prices on the saying they like to make shopping move, which short circuits their previous a social event with their friends: shopping habits. Instead of being tied to a computer at home they can get out into the “going shopping with my friends shop whilst their mobile device gives them is part of the fun – you know, ‘do I the sense of security that they will still get the look good in this’”. best price: “I can pull their website up on my phone (when in-store) and I’ll guarantee you I will get a cheaper price online” 25-34 yr old. Platforms used nowadays % By gender The ability to haggle on the spot is a critical shift in the power relationship between Retailer websites 72 78 shoppers and retailers. “Shoppers want to 62 seek out the best price, and this is where Price comparison websites 63 mobile technology will become more Facebook 52 60 important.” Bernd Larsen Linde, Director of 59 global trade marketing, Lego You Tube 51 (Source: Marketing Week, 28/01/2011) Interest group websites 37 43 Consumer review websites 27 19 Other phone apps 20 14 Phone apps that support shopping 14 Male 8 FemaleWindows 10 5
  6. 6. Now this sociability is spilling over into their So of the two trends which we believe will have use of the internet – being more likely than considerable impact on the retail landscape a men to use Facebook and interest group very clear gender divide is emerging: websites. Surely then social media offers an opportunity for retailers and brands to engage Mobile commerce looks to be able to more deeply with female customers online. offer a strong opportunity for businesses to facilitate the shopping process for men Yet, here is another interesting facet of the by playing up on the ‘boys and their toys’ gender divide: whilst the mobile commerce mindset to get men into the shops. Done trend seems to have made a real connection well, marketing strategies based on with men who talk about how the novelty and mobile commerce can directly influence enjoyment provides genuine value; most transactional behaviour women have yet to engage with businesses through social networking. In fact only 21 Social media should suit the inherent percent of women have communicated with sociability of women and their interest in retailers via Facebook compared to 27 shopping, but what’s being done percent of men. commercially on social media networks has yet to make that connection 21st Century Communication with each group, but they tend to be the tool With all the tools now available to that feels most comfortable for that group, communicate with each other it is no and we can become uncomfortable when surprise to see that a loose set of rules people step outside these ‘rules’: seems to be developing among young users in terms of which tools are appropriate for which set of people they want to ‘talk to’: Facebook as a friend Facebook as a friend emerging ‘rules’ in mind when developing their communications plans, particularly with reference to the tone of voice that would beWindows 10 6
  7. 7. Brands findinga voiceF or brands the social media platform offers an opportunity to talk directly toshoppers. In fact, social media hangs the Interestingly there is more permission for retailers to be on Facebook than brands (27 percent have interacted with retailers viacarrot of direct access in front of brands Facebook versus only 17 percent withwhich would explain why so many brands brands). It is most likely that the physicalare creating a Facebook presence. And yet presence of retailers on the high street meansthere are so many ‘buts’ to the idea of we are used to dealing directly with them.brands on social networks – not least theobvious shopper response: That said social media could be a hugely powerful tool as it has the potential to allow brands to find their voice in a way that doesn’t require using a commercialThe reason why brands want to be on medium or relying on a retailer tosocial networks is the very same reason act as the messenger.why shoppers struggle to understand whythey are there: the direct connection with It all sounds so easy, and yet the challengesthe target audience. are evident:Shoppers just aren’t used to talking directlyto brands, and so it’s almost as if they don’tknow what brands could possibly have to say websites – we just don’t have the sameto them that would be of interest or that they impetus to talk directly to brands as we do todon’t already know. talk directly with retailers of brands using social media, compared to 18 percent saying the same of retailers 7 Windows 10
  8. 8. There seems to be a fundamental barrier in our The challenge for businesses minds as to why we should communicate used to keeping a tight rein on directly with a brand, or why a brand would want to communicate directly with us. That brand marketing is to inject fun doesn’t mean we won’t communicate with into their Facebook activity – and brands, it simply means that brands need to to keep that fun fresh. work hard to set up a meaningful connection. Brands need to think about what they want So for brands to create meaningful to share with the shopper, not just what connections in the social media space: they want to get out of the conversation. And they need to work on the basis that they have to seek out these connections rather than that they are making relevant connections assuming shoppers will come to them. and relationships with their target universe that stand a chance of making an impact Those shoppers who have decided to follow on people’s behaviours over time brands on social media (9 percent of our sample) were looking for tangible benefits such as: new news; exclusive prices / products / market rather than assume the market discounts; competitions. But they are also will find them looking for fun, which shouldn’t be a surprise given this media is about having fun. space which generates curiosity in the brand, and gives a reason for shoppers to keep coming back their brand space within the social context of this new mediaWindows 10 8
  9. 9. All about me (the shopper) One of the key themes emerging in our research And that means a business needs to understand was that these new tools are not about what what the target market wants or needs from them. shoppers can do for business, but about what business can do for shoppers – brand to me not Whilst there is a lot of pressure to ‘just do it’, to just me to brand. Yet much of the chatter in the get involved because everyone else is, that would commercial world has been about commercial be a mistake. Businesses should think about: opportunities: social media as a CRM tool; explaining an ethical positioning; selling products; or monitoring what people say about platforms a company. As previously discussed social networking has the broader marketing / communications plan developed as a personal tool, a way of keeping in touch on a social level. The numbers now involved make the commercial opportunity these platforms should take obvious, but that opportunity will be achieved only through a real understanding of what shoppers want from businesses in this space. Attitudes towards Businesses using Social Media % Total sample (1000) Equally, mobile commerce is based on a To sell products 54 26 personal tool – a phone. So the most engaging 34 commercial applications are those which give To see what customers are saying 23 something to the shopper e.g. phone apps or To find out more about their customers 29 internet access on the move. Yet when the 24 25 commercial world forces itself on the user, it can To stand out from their competitors 18 be rejected “I was at the match (Wales v To connect with people like me 25 23 Australia) and my phone just kept pinging with 23 messages from sponsors. I wanted to watch the To bring the brand to life 20 b****y match, not answer advertising!” To tell me something new 22 32 7 To make the connection that engages shoppers To help me have some fun 12 a business needs to focus on giving the shopper Why shoppers THINK companies do it What shoppers WANT from companies on it something that will keep bringing them back.Windows 10 9
  10. 10. It’s aboutmore than a sale ?O ne of the reasons we decided to look at the impact of social media onshopping was because we were hearing Reasons for making contact with companies % Total sample (1000)concerns from retailers that the huge spend 63they were allocating to social media wasn’t To make a purchase 6delivering sales. They were starting to Researching what to buy 59question their investment in social media. 10 To get news about new products 51 13Perhaps the question isn’t about To find the best prices 8 45whether to invest in social media To get loyalty rewards 44or not, but about the targets that 7 43 To access reviewsare being set by businesses. 12 43 To get vouchers / offers / discounts 10If we look at why shoppers contact 42 To make a complaintbusinesses on social media, vs looking at 6their websites we can see why retailers are To get news about the company 11 38so frustrated – only six percent use social 26 To find out what others have boughtmedia to make a purchase. 15 14 To share thoughts / join a forum 29 12 To feel part of a group 32 Company Websites Social Media 10 Windows 10
  11. 11. But at the same time, the retailers’ frustration seems rather short sighted. Rather than assume social media will deliver an actual sale, they should consider all other benefits which could lead a shopper to make a sale in-store or via the website, such as news about new products or variants, loyalty rewards, vouchers/offers, and finding out what others have bought. And so we reach the conclusions of our research: 1. That businesses should see social media and mobile commerce as platforms for communication. 2. That these communication platforms should be part of the overall marketing and communication plan. 3. And that as with all marketing mechanics and communication media they should be seen as opportunities to target shoppers at different stages in the purchase journey in order that the result of these combined efforts is the sale, rather than expecting one tool to achieve that job in isolation.Windows 10 11
  12. 12. Our series of Windows reports are a small part of the research service we provide to clients. If you would like to know more about how we can help your business better understand shoppers’ attitudes, needs and behaviours please contact us. CONTACT Alice Synge: alice.synge@shoppercentric.com mobile: + 44 (0) 7977 579 076 evolution@shoppercentric.com or visit our web site at: www.shoppercentric.comWindows 10 12