Yes, it’s that time of year again, when many youngsters’ hearts sink a little under the knowledge that they’ll soon be Back to School, and many a consumer insights professional’s work day becomes more pressured (one hopes after having first recharged with a nice summer vacation). MFour’s Path-2-Purchase™ Platform has been observing shifts in retail trends critical for consumer insights professionals who need an immediate understanding of shopper behavior this time of year.
- At Walmart, nationwide store visits over the first three weekends in August were up 17% over the last three weekends in July.
- Target saw a 22% jump during the same period.
- Staples stores witnessed a whopping 46% gain in average weekend visits, coinciding with the August Back-to-School season.
Back to School is a big event for retailers and brands. The National Research Federation predicts that this year's sconsumer spending will reach $83 billion by the time school bells ring and college campuses come back to life. It’s a short window from now ‘til then, and sellers must hustle to maximize their share. Hence the pressure on the consumer insights teams they're relying on for data, analysis and guidance.
Are you up to the challenge of helping your clients or your brands’ decision-makers recognize problems and opportunities right away? Being able to make on-the-fly adjustments is crucial to succeeding in todays complex and competitive retail environment.
One very applicable quick-turnaround use case for Path-2-Purchase™ from now until school starts can help your decision-makers right-size seasonal staffing. When you can see and quantify actual surges in traffic, you can put more customer service representatives and checkout personnel in your stores to give your shoppers an experience that they’ll consider efficient, successful and relatively stress-free. They’ll love you for it – and they’ll be back when Halloween comes around.
How does it work? A key value of Path-2-Purchase™ is the ability to instantly identify consumers as they visit a store, and push them a mobile survey while they’re still shopping, or just after they’ve left. You get your data from validated, first-party consumers, segmented not just by where and when they shop, but by detailed demographic profiles based on more than 200 data points. It beats trying to infer who people are from third-party data whose uncertain sourcing often makes it too much of a not-so-good thing. And it lets you understand your competitors’ customers and their paths to purchase, in ways that can help your brand convert the other guy’s shoppers into your own.
Because you’ll identify and survey shoppers while they’re still in a store, or just after they’ve left, you’ll get feedback while their emotions and recall are at a revealing peak. Researchers can expect a 25% response rate within an hour, and 50% within 24 hours. Identifying shopper satisfaction issues in the first week or two of Back to School shopping gives you your best shot at helping your stakeholders correct them in time to avoid alienating shoppers and taking hits to the bottom line.
You can school yourself by taking a free spin with the Path-2-Purchase™ dashboard, so just click here. And to learn more about how first-party mobile consumers engaged with in-app mobile research capabilities can meet your specific projects’ needs, just click here.