Blis Study Analyses Shopper Behaviour in Singapore

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Blis Study Analyses Shopper Behaviour in Singapore — Mobile and Location-based Technologies Key for Retailers Looking to Stay Relevant and Competitive

  • Research findings suggest that reports on physical retail’s demise have been overstated
  • Loyalty is overrated and retailers must appeal to consumers’ deal-hunting tendencies
  • Retailers must strategically redesign in-store experiences to boost shopper interest, footfall and sales during the Great Singapore Sale and beyond

Singapore – 19 June 2019 Ahead of major shopping events like the Great Singapore Sale and Singles’ Day, Blis, the global leader in real-world intelligence, today announces new findings from a global study of 6,000 consumers—including over 450 in Singapore—conducted in April and May 2019. The goal is to deliver fresh insight into consumers’ shopping behaviours, to help retailers strategise and boost engagement throughout the rest of this year.

“The Real Retail Story” highlights just how much Singaporeans love to shop. 45% of respondents said they shop because it makes them happy, and nearly half – 49% – consider shopping a hobby. The desire to shop in-store is also very much alive, and is the preferred way to buy food and groceries, furniture, household appliances, clothes, footwear, jewellery and health and beauty products. Consumers are also willing to spend higher amounts when shopping in-store, with 81% indicating that they will be looking out for in-store deals during the upcoming Great Singapore Sale. And when it comes to the checkout, whether shopping online or offline, Singapore consumers prefer to use credit cards for nearly every purchase of any size, with the only exception being in-store purchases of less than $35 where cash is preferred.

“For some time now, headlines have proclaimed that we’re suffering through a retail apocalypse. Problems have hit an all-time high this year, with the highest number of store closures in a decade seen across much of the globe. However, our findings show that Singapore consumers still massively value shopping in-store, and that any talk about physical retailers being rendered obsolete by e-commerce is premature,” said Richard Andrew, Managing Director, Asia, Blis. “Shoppers’ attention and discretionary spending are now being pulled in multiple directions, meaning retail strategy has to evolve. In a mobile-first world, retailers have to master new approaches like location-based data to connect with shoppers at the right place and time to win their hearts, minds and wallets.”

Key takeaways from The Real Retail Story

Mobile Shopping and In-store Visits Now Intertwined:With consumers actively using smartphones while shopping in-store, retailers who can successfully combine mobile and in-store shopping experiences will likely achieve more engagement and sales.

  • 80% of local consumers use their mobile phones when shopping in a physical store. The most popular reason for doing so is to ‘compare prices for the same item to ensure I am getting the best deal’ (72%), followed by reading other customers’ product reviews.
  • 67% of local consumers say that they have spent time searching for items on shopping websites but made the final purchase in-store. The main reason for doing so is that they ‘like to see the quality of the product before buying’ (56%).
  • 63% of local consumers say they have spent time looking for items in-store before purchasing them online. The biggest reason for doing so is that they can ‘sometimes get better deals’ (54%).

Proactively Engage Consumers Outdoor with Relevant Messaging: Given that consumers are often influenced by the content served to them on mobile devices, retailers that offer relevant and proximity-based deals and promotions will attract higher footfall and sales.

  • 68% of local consumers are open to providing personal information at the entrance of a store in exchange for vouchers.
  • 64% of local consumers say that they made the decision to walk into the nearest store to look for relevant products after seeing an online advertisement when outdoors. 86% of these consumers also ended up purchasing the respective product.

Redefine the In-store Shopping Experience: By investing in innovations like automated store assistance and smart mirrors to aid the discovery of relevant items and introducing home delivery or in-store collection for purchased items, retailers stand a higher chance of having consumers complete their purchases.

  • Local consumers would feel more inclined to purchase in-store if the items are categorised like in online stores (41%).
  • The main causes of abandoning a physical store are ‘if the shopper can’t find the right item’ (55%) and ‘if the store is too crowded’ (61%).
  • The main causes of abandoning a purchase online are ‘expensive delivery charges’ (58%) and ‘items being out of stock’ (50%).

“Our research highlights that almost half of Singapore consumers derive a sense of happiness from shopping. In other words, emotions influence behaviour and retail therapy is real. Retailers must therefore design physical-digital experiences that surprise and delight, engineer serendipity, as well as negate common frustrations and points of friction. Imagine walking down Orchard Road and receiving a message from your favourite brand saying that the pair of jeans you’ve been waiting on is now back in stock at a shop a street away, in your size and favourite colour, and at a discount if you purchase it today. Creating this is easier said than done, and this is why Blis offers retailers the location data technology they need to understand real-world behaviour, and deliver the visceral shopping experiences that people crave,” said Andrew.

To access the full Blis-commissioned The Real Retail Story research findings and analysis, download the full report here.

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