Mind the knowledge gap: Retailers miss out on millions due to poor advice in-store

Retail brands potentially missed out on nearly £15 billion in in-store revenue in the past year, due to poor in-person advice. Research has revealed one in 10 shoppers said they had walked out of a shop due to poor advice relating to a considered purchase they were definitely going to make.

The findings come from new research commissioned by field marketing and retail experience agency, Gekko. The study of 2,000 consumers, conducted by OnePoll, looked at what influences shoppers in making a ‘considered purchase’.

Gekko surveyed experiences across several key retail categories, including consumer electronics, gaming, homeware and home improvement. 37 per cent of shoppers in the CE category revealed they would be prepared to spend more if they received excellent and knowledgeable in-store advice, indicating a golden opportunity for retailers.

However, overall, nearly 60 per cent of people said they had received ‘excellent or good advice in-store’ – highlighting the benefit of human interaction and face-to-face sales.

According to the survey, 24 per cent of Brits made a ‘considered purchase’ in CE during the pandemic. Encouragingly for the future of physical retail, Gen Z are most likely to seek out great advice in-store; one in two people in this age category and 38 per cent of Millennials will spend more for a good experience in-store – crucial for the development of experiential retail.

Daniel Todaro, MD of Gekko, said it is clear that online alone is no replacement for the experience and interaction of trained advisors.

“They are consistently the best way to influence and convert a sale of a considered purchase item.

“Our survey clearly shows more can be done and retailers have potentially missed out on billions. Not to say that all retailers are doing it wrong; those with a real customer service-first mentality are doing it amazingly well. Every person through the door is a potential customer, an influencer, someone who will talk about you positively to others – not someone who is viewed as just another body to ‘deal’ with.”

Mr Todaro continued: “Brands already know the need to embrace experts and adapt to survive in a changing market; it’s now about making the investment to do so and implement the new experience-centric playbook.”