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Monday, August 17, 2009

"Wow" and the Consumer Shopping Experience

Discovering WOWHave you had a chance to review the latest Wharton retail research about shopping experiences? Wharton's Jay H. Baker Retailing Initiative with Verde and the Retail Council of Canada teamed up for the sixth annual study of the state of shopper satisfaction in North America. The result? "Discovering "WOW" - A Study of Great Retail Shopping Experiences in North America [link to Executive Summary].

The latest research results were described in Knowledge@Wharton's Getting to "Wow": Consumers Describe What Makes a Great Shopping Experience.

Here is what caught my attention...

From Getting to "Wow":
+ "Brand experience and engagement are the strongest drivers of loyalty... Brand experience includes store design and atmosphere, consistently great product quality, making customers feel they're special and the sense that customers always get a deal."

+ "Speeding the shopping process is another important trait of a great retailer."

+ "It is important for retailers to have a clear, simple problem resolution process. 'The biggest issue is problem-ownership.'"

+"Today's economic crisis is leading consumers to focus more on value than price."

From Discovering "WOW" Executive Summary:
+ Great store experiences result from multiple elements "70% [of respondents] said their shopping experience was great due to six or more elements occurring during the shopping trip in question."

+ "Shoppers care about quality."

+ The better the shopping experience, the greater the loyalty.

+ The five categories of great shopping experiences include: engagement, executional excellence, brand experience, expediting, and problem recovery.

+ Men talk more about great than women... but women care more about great than men and "great shopping experiences ... inspire women to action and loyalty."

What have you observed with your customers? Do the results of this study match up? How do you create "WOW" shopping experiences for your consumers?

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Anonymous said...

Thank you for this post. This post and the mentioned research, is what inspired me to write this post - http://bit.ly/YTUB4. I am always amazed at how some retailers can have such a compelling value proposition that they are able to bend the rules at what makes a great retail experience. In fact, I think that other retailers mask the fact that their merchandise is vanilla by trying to create a 'hook' with their retail environ. Others do subscribe to what makes it right, but their products are so great that they could be on bricks and still sell - i.e. Apple.

CB Whittemore said...


First my apologies for this very belated response... :(

Your point about compelling value propositions allowing rules to be bent is marvelous and so very true. I spent Monday walking through stores in SoHo with David Polinchock http://blog.polinchock.com/. We were both amazed at the stores that were about more that just the stuff they sold [e.g., Apple, Lulu Lemon…] and able to create compelling brand and community experiences as a result.

Makes all of this quite fascinating.

Many thanks for commenting and I look forward to following you more closely.


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Reminder: Please, no self-promotional or SPAM comments. Don't bother if you're simply trying to build inauthentic link juice. Finally, don't be anonymous: it's too hard to have a conversation. Thanks, CB

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