Long queues, lack of pay tech drives shoppers away
Published 04 September 2018 | Hannah McGrath
Nearly half of shoppers are abandoning the High Street due to endless queues, according to new research that highlights the need for better payments technology.
A survey by retail technology firm Jisp of 1,000 shoppers found that 41 per cent said they had ditched the High Street due to the experience of long queues, while other deterrents driving them to take their money online included difficulty locating products in store (19 per cent) and a lack of knowledgeable staff (15 per cent).
Almost a quarter (24 per cent) said they could be tempted back into stores if retailers adopted better payment technologies, while over a third (37 per cent) expected to be able to see available stock in real-time.
The research underlines shoppers’ growing expectations of being able to use technology and online systems as part of a seamless omnichannel retail experience.
Julian Fisher, chief executive of Jisp, said: “Despite the fact that fewer of us now shop in bricks and mortar stores, lower staffing levels often mean there are still queues at the pay desk, which can be frustrating.
“In this age when payments can be made instantly with a mobile phone, for example, these delays seem like a relic of the past to busy shoppers – and another reason to shop online.”
However, the findings were not all gloom for the high street, with 15 per cent saying they valued the fact that a shopping trip avoids the delivery charges and waiting times associated with online shopping.
In the same vein, 13 per cent said shopping in-store allowed them to see what was available in a traditional store compared to browsing images online.
Almost a half of those surveyed (48 per cent) said the greatest benefit of in-store shopping was the ability to touch and feel products, however 39 per cent said they rarely spoke to shop assistants for product information.
Fisher said it was vital for retailers to take heed of the survey results and make changes to tempt consumers back to the High Street.
“Making it easier for customers to pay for their goods and adopting new technology to do so should be at the top of the agenda,” he said.
“Retailers should also focus on the elements of the shopping experience that are unique to stores, such as the ability to touch and try on items, which can’t be paralleled online,” added Fisher.
Credit: Retail Systems