It appears there is a growing gap between what consumers are expecting and what retailers are capable of delivering.
Research by Manhattan Associates has revealed that 52 per cent of the 1,000 shoppers surveyed found products available online that were unavailable in-store, while 59 per cent said they found differences between online and in-store pricing.
More Australians are using the in-store shopping experience as a way to physically browse through goods before heading online. 55 per cent of shoppers admitted to in-store browsing before buying from online competitors, highlighting the need for retailers to offer goods and services on various platforms.
Customers will not necessarily wait to get home either, with 16 per cent revealing they have bought from a competitor via mobile device whilst still in the store.
“Retailers need to deliver a seamless shopping experience across all channels and deliver it profitably,” said Raghav Sibal, Managing Director, Australia & New Zealand, Manhattan Associates.
“In their focus areas for the coming year or so, Australian retailers are recognising they need to improve the way they approach the order fulfilment process.”
89 per cent of Australians were found to have embraced online shopping, a factor pushing stores to re-think their customer approach.
“Organisations are moving quickly to employ new services and delivery options to retain customer loyalty,” said Mr Sibal.
“It is an exciting time for retailers and consumers alike, but finding a balance between customer satisfaction and profitability will be imperative for survival in the coming years.”
Retailers may need to have in-store internet devices at the ready in order to keep a customer’s focus on their business. 78 per cent of shoppers said they would buy an item they were researching in-store if the retailer provided a device that allowed them to compare prices on the spot.