U.S. consumers embrace digital engagement from physical storefronts

Study reveals that digitalization, driven by millennials, will play an elevated role as U.S. consumers bring their online expectations into physical retail spaces.

You signed up for your favorite retailers loyalty program and now get an influx of e-mails, Facebook updates, and more heralding its latest deals and inventory. Is this a courtesy or annoyance? Euclid Analytics “Digital Engagement In Stores” research conducted online by Harris Poll among 2115 U.S. adults ages 18 and older found more and more U.S. consumers are finding these retailer communications useful, when provided at the right time, within the right context.

Millennials use digital to enrich physical retail experiences
The research found that millennial consumers now reshape their in-store shopping experiences around personalization and convenience to give them the same experience they get online. And while mobile focused Millennial shoppers share many traits, some differences exist in gender preferences, according to the new study. Both men and women want to use in-store Wi-fi on their mobile devices to personalize the store experience, but men are more likely to value features that create an easier and faster checkout or a VIP experience. Women tend to prefer messaging that offers discounts, deals or exclusive offers.

Boomers preferences align with other demographics
The survey found some surprising overlaps between millennials and their baby boomer parents in terms of retailer contact. The majority of mobile users, 74%, want to receive communications from stores or business during a visit. And while millennials were the highest out of any demographic, with 84% stating they want to receive messages during a visit, 59% of boomers were also inclined to receiving a little persistent reminders while shopping at their favorite stores. “The baby boomer demographic proved to be just as savvy as the millennials,” Brent Franson, CEO of Euclid Analytics.

Shopping experiences don’t end at the door
According to the survey findings, Americans don't want the experience to end when they leave the store. The survey found that an overwhelming 81% of respondents actually want to receive communications from a store following a recent visit.

A desire to keep in touch with retailers has become an extension of how savvy consumers have become accustomed to “just for you!” suggestions for just about everything. “Millennials have grown up shopping online, getting tailored Netflix recommendations, and buying songs on iTunes with the tap of a finger,” says Franson. “This personalization has raised expectations across both offline and online retail experiences, pushing retailers to stay top of mind with their shoppers after every interaction, whether in a physical store or on a website.”

But retaining some control over how and when communication was made is even more important to millennials, with 88% of that demographic wanting to choose how and when they are targeted compared to 77% of the larger population.

To view complete findings, downlad the report here.

Tags: Mobile, Marketing, in-store, U.S.

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