How much technology in physical retail is desirable—and how much is too much? Perhaps surprisingly, despite their differences in the use of retail tech, both sexes agree where the line should be drawn. While technology has a place in the store, it needs to enhance—not distract from—the immersive experience of being in the physical location.
Retail analytics and omnichannel engagement firm Euclid Analytics recently revealed the results of its Evolution of Retail, 2017 Men v. Women Shopper Report, which evaluates the differences between male and female shopping behavior. The commissioned survey polled over 1,500 consumers from the U.S., and found that while there are differences in mobile engagement between men and women, both groups show a lack of interest in a store run solely by technology.
Mobile plays a central role in brick-and-mortar visits. But once a shopper enters the physical store, they are not looking for a tech-first experience. They want a break—an immersive, sensory experience that still incorporates human interaction at its core.
The study reveals some of the consumer experiences that men tend to gravitate toward versus women and identifies the key aspects of the retail experience that create lasting impressions on each demographic.
Key findings from the survey:
Women are more engaged on mobile while shopping
Thirty-seven percent of women text or chat with friends and family about buying options (v. 24 percent of men); 41 percent of women look up email promotions (v. 27 percent of men); and 42 percent of women take pictures of products to remember it for later (v. 30 percent of men).
Women value in-store shopping to confirm fit and style
Sixty-five percent of women shop in-store because of the ability to easily try on clothes and for tailored recommendations (v. 55 percent of men).
Men seek human interaction in-store
Seventy-three percent of men always or frequently interact with sales associate at retail stores, v. 65 percent of women. 28 percent of men consider lack of responsiveness from an associate their biggest pet peeve when shopping in-store (v. 23 percent of women).
Both groups not ready for Amazon Go
Less than half of both genders (41 percent of men, 46 percent of women) would be interested in visiting a purely technology-operated store.
“Our study underscores that, despite technology’s increasing role in physical stores, customers still enjoy personalized human interactions while shopping,” said Brent Franson, CEO of Euclid Analytics, in a news release. “Ultimately, retailers that thrive will use data to inform immersive, tailored experiences for their physical locations—harvesting a deeper understanding of all their customers, and delivering tailored, cohesive experiences across both digital and physical platforms with human interactions at the core.”