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Just 40% of Shoppers Think Their Orders Will be Filled as Promised

Just 40% of Shoppers Think Their Online Orders Will be Filled as Promised

Nov. 4, 2021
Two-thirds of shoppers plan to return to brick-and-mortar locations in the coming months.

It seems there is a large trust gap between shoppers and retailers. A new study, 14th Annual Global Shopper Study, released on Nov. 3 by Zebra Technologies Corp., found that while more than half of decision-makers surveyed (55%) believe they are completely trusted to fulfill online orders as promised,  only 38% of shoppers indicate complete trust in retailers.

Retail associates are wary of their employers’ capabilities as well, with only 51% completely trusting their employer’s ability to deliver or fulfill customers’ online/mobile orders as promised.  

Perhaps it's this lack of trust that is driving shoppers, two-thirds of which plan to return to brick-and-mortar locations in the coming months, and most, 73%, want to get in and out of stores quickly.  

More than 70% confirm they have recently left stores without all the items they wanted, with nearly half citing out-of-stocks as the reason for not making an in-store purchase.

Even with this high percentage coming back to stores, 65% are still worried about exposure to others and are concerned about whether or not retailers are adhering to health and safety mandates. That fear, in turn, is causing 73% to prefer to have items delivered to them rather than pick up orders at the store or other location.

Online ordering continues to flourish as over three-quarters (77%) say they have placed a mobile order, with over half of Boomers taking advantage of mobile commerce (m-commerce) options. Thirty-five percent of Boomers also say they have used mobile apps for grocery or food delivery specifically.

 Omnichannel Shopping Behaviors Taking Hold in Brick-and-Mortar Stores

Even at the store, about one-third of consumers say they use their mobile devices to lookup competitive prices or browse online websites. More than 25% of surveyed shoppers have placed click-and-collect m-commerce orders while out shopping, with some even completing mobile orders for home delivery.

Eighty-four percent of retail decision-makers know this “do-it-yourself” (DIY) trend is taking hold, and many are taking a closer look at how technology can be utilized to meet customers’ expectations and save sales. That’s good news considering a majority of shoppers don’t want to spend their money with another retailer. More than six-in-10 say they would be willing to purchase out-of-stock items before leaving the store if they could pick those items up at another one of the retailer’s nearby stores or the items could be shipped to their homes.

“Consumers appreciate the convenience of click-and-collect and home delivery options, especially as retailers have added new fulfillment options and incentivized m-commerce transactions,” said Bill Inzeo, global retail technology strategist, Zebra Technologies. “Many retailers have adjusted processes to account for the popularity of these new retail experiences, and their perspective on the importance of technology is changing.”

Retailers Making Online Order Processing and Fulfillment More Efficient

With retail channels blending more than ever, over three-quarters of decision-makers say increasing the efficiency of online order processing and fulfillment is a priority. Nearly nine-in-10 decision-makers confirm their company is now looking at ways to improve in-store pick and pack as well as warehouse fulfillment.  Over one-third of decision-makers are now converting store space into designated pickup and returns locations, which could help divert traffic away from a central customer service desk.

“Even a single out-of-stock could drive an in-store customer to abandon their entire cart on the spot if they can place a mobile pickup order elsewhere and get everything they need,” explained Inzeo. “Therefore, associates need to be equipped with mobile devices and applications that enable them to help shoppers complete their in-store purchases using alternative fulfillment options.”

With labor shortages and associate satisfaction also impacting retail store execution, most decision-makers say they plan to deploy workforce and task management software in the next year. This is positive feedback considering 70% of associates view their employers more positively when they are provided with technology. And over 80% say they could provide a better customer experience if they had mobile computers and barcode scanners in hand. Retail associates also believe analytics will help them have better daily experiences and prefer to manage their tasks and schedules using mobile apps and devices.

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