Reinventing the role of the employees in the store

A new report highlights the changing expectations of the consumer omnicanal vis-à-vis the sales staff.

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Despite the growth in online sales, the store remains a key contact point in the purchase path of consumers, as revealed in a new report from ShopperTrak, the world’s leading provider of information on customer behavior, and leader in the field of the analysis of attendance.

redesigning retailBien that connected clients are more accustomed to moving freely from one channel to another – online and off – line, when they make their purchases, the survey that was the basis for the report Restructuring in retail : what future for traditional commerce ? reveals that more than half of French consumers (51 %) are also often their in-store purchases than in the previous year.

While more than half (57 %) of French consumers say they know exactly what item they plan to buy when they enter a store, only 4 % of them go into a shop to stroll without a specific purpose in mind. As suggested in this report, this is due to the fact that customers are doing more online research on an article before making a visit to a physical store, and they are now in a shop being already well-informed and ready to buy.

And this strong knowledge is produced impacts the expectations of consumers vis-à-vis their in-store experience, physical and, more specifically, vis-à-vis the role of the employees of the store.

The main findings of the report include :

· More than a quarter of consumers in france (28 %) think that a better training of staff would improve their experience in the shop, and a further 28 per cent would like the sellers to be equipped with tablets allowing them to lead the digital features directly into the store. Customers could therefore benefit from similar services in e-commerce, such as access to advice online or check inventory in real-time.

· While 56 % of clients, a queue too long, represents the most common ground to abandon an in-store purchase, a fifth of them (21 %) would give up an article if they had to wait too long for a salesman to come help.

· In the same way, 15 % of French customers would abandon their purchases if the seller was not familiar with the product, the real proof of the growing expectations of the consumer omnicanal vis-à-vis the “value-added” or recommendations that can offer the sales staff, in addition to what it can find itself.

· Accustomed to a high level of customization on e-commerce sites, customers, multi-channel French increasingly expect this same level of personalized service from the store employees ; a fifth of them (21 %) say that having a larger staff available to provide a service to the individual would improve their experience in store. This underscores the need for retailers to not only offer a contact in head-to-head to their clients, but also to learn about precisely the variation of attendance in their trade in order to be able to optimize, hour by hour, the ratio of sales staff/customer.

Herve Vervoot, regional Director France & Benelux at ShopperTrak, commented on these figures : “Even if a high proportion of the periods of high traffic in the stores can be scheduled in advance and allows retailers to provide the operational resources needed with a certain degree of confidence, the difficulty for them is to meet the needs of clients once they are entered into the store. The biggest challenge of physical stores lies not only in the use of technology to bring ever more of digital data in physical points of sale, but also to combine statistical knowledge with the human touch in order to make the shop such a unique environment, and truly gratifying for the consumer. ”

For more information on how retailers can sustain the role of the physical store within their multichannel strategies, download the full report on our website :

Notes to editors
A survey of 5,000 european consumers of the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy and Spain, conducted by Morar to the account of ShopperTrak

About ShopperTrak
Belonging to Tyco Retail Solutions, ShopperTrak announced in the month of October its integration with FootFall. Together, they form a unity, a single trade that provides its customers with actionable intelligence, enabling them to optimize their operations and increase their profitability.
ShopperTrak is the leading provider of information on customer behaviour. It is a leader in the field of the analysis of visitation to the destination of retailers and managers of commercial space in over a hundred countries and territories in the world. This new synergy allows a global analysis of the attendance with approximately $ 40 billion of crossings recorded each year, providing information unmatched on the attendance and behaviour of clients.

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