Online Retail Associates Important To Shoppers

According to Salesfloor’s 2016 Omnichannel Retail Associate Study, as the number of consumers shopping online continues to grow, retailers are struggling to replicate the service they provide in store into their e-commerce sites, says the report. Shoppers are noticing this gap in the human element of customer service between online and brick-and-mortar shopping, signifying a need for retailers to change how they service online customers. This study shows how associates need to be part of the omnichannel shopping experience. The study findings are replicated here.

Live chat and suggested complementary products are the top two online customer service features that will result in shoppers buying more from a retailer over time, according to the respondents.

The Online Customer Service Feature That Will Result In Buying More Through That Retailer Over Time

Service Feature                % of Respondents

Live chat                               32.55%
Suggested complementary products      28.73%
Expert advice from sales associate        20.91%
Email support                     17.82 %
Source: Salesfloor, September 2016

Online Shopping Sentiments

  • Half of shoppers say online shopping lacks the level of customer service offered in stores, particularly recommendations and guidance on products.
  • 58 percent of shoppers say it would be helpful to see sales associates’ recommendations, preferences and insights online to help them make a purchase

Q & A With Respondents (Salesfloor, September 2016)

If you could shop online with the help of a sales associate, would you?

  • Yes     53.08% 
  • No       46.92%

When shopping online do you find it helpful to see product recommendations, preferences and insights from sales associates to decide on purchase?

  • Yes     58.14% 
  • No       41.66%

How often do you seek out the help or recommendation of a sales associate? 

  • Never  16.28%
  • 25% of the time        59.63%
  • 50%    19.44%
  • 75%    4.65%

After receiving product recommendations from a sales associate, how likely are you to consider buying that product

  • Not likely        12.34% 
  • Somewhat likely      77.38% 
  • Very likely      10.28%

And, says the report, 77% of shoppers are more likely to make a purchase from a sales associate who has helped them before. Salesfloor continues:

  • Knowledge of product specifics and personal demeanor are the two most influential sales associates characteristics that impact shoppers’ purchase decisions
  • 14% of shoppers purchase big items that require more research in-store because they can ask sales associates for help
  • 62% of shoppers find expert advice and recommendations from sales associates to be helpful
  • 62 percent of shoppers would rather receive marketing emails from an individual associate, rather than the retailer’s national marketing team
  • 60 percent of shoppers are more likely to share their email address and personal information with retailers if they know the communication is managed by an individual associate

For additional information from Salesfloor, please visit here.



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