Recent research suggests that this could be costing British retailers up to £3.4 billion a year in lost sales. But until now there has been little or no research showing the cost of poor in-store connectivity, which can cause slow EPoS terminals, sluggish Wi-Fi and colleague systems to buffer.
With digital connectivity now such a key element of the consumer journey the impact of substandard digital networks should not be underestimated.
Network specialists Vodat recently looked at this subject, interviewing 1,000 UK consumers and the results make for sobering reading. Here are seven headline stats from their survey that underline the importance of great in-store connectivity when it comes to converting sales.
55% of consumers will shop elsewhere if a retailer doesn’t provide free Wi-Fi
Complimentary customer connectivity is now considered critical by more than half of all shoppers. That’s because they rely on it to do a wide range of things while they’re instore. This includes researching products, viewing online shopping lists, posting on social media and keeping in touch with work, friends and family.
56% of shoppers say difficult-to-use self-service devices will cause them to abandon their basket instore
Customers want fast, frictionless interactions with technology. The moment tech makes an action or process more complicated, customers say they will vote with their feet. This is shown by the fact that more than half of shoppers say difficult-to-use self-service devices will cause them to abandon their basket instore.
64% would abandon their basket due to a faulty EPoS terminal
As we’ve already discussed, everyone in retail knows that customers loathe having to wait in line at the checkout, so why should they tolerate slow or faulty EPoS? Our research found that nearly two-thirds would leave a store empty handed if faced with a non-functioning EPoS terminal.
66% said general poor in-store connectivity would drive them away
Two-thirds of customers said they would simply leave a store if it suffered from general poor connectivity, causing frustrating Wi-Fi data speeds, slow EPoS and buffering digital screens.
Half were more likely to buy if mobile EPoS terminals were available
Exactly half said they would be persuaded to purchase by the speed and convenience of mobile point of sale machines.
Personalisation is a customer pleaser for 49% of shoppers
And just under half said they would be more likely to buy from a retailer that offers product recommendations based on their previous buying behaviour.
64% are irritated by dodgy Wi-Fi
Free in-store web access is a powerful sales tool, but it is easy to get it wrong and frustrate customers. The consumers Vodat spoke to listed their biggest Wi-Fi gripes as: slow data speeds, lack of reliability, questionable security, complicated log-in processes and too much personal data needed for initial sign-up. Any one of these can drive customers away.
For more information about in-store customer pain points, visit Vodat’s interactive web page.