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Offering consumers what they want is a critical challenge retailers face every single day — whether that's in terms of pure product selection down aisles and on shelves, or the technology available in-store or online to make a purchase.

One convenient technology option that can drive a more fluid, rewarding and personalized shopping journey is an in-store mobile handheld scanner. This can prove a better way to gain interest and traction with the benefits mobile retail technology brings, given some might be less trusting of using their own smartphone device.

However, it’s not enough simply to offer consumers new technology to use. Retailers must first understand who their shoppers are, and tailor their messaging, communications, services and rollouts accordingly.

That’s why Diebold Nixdorf worked with Nielsen to survey 15,000 shoppers, from 15 different countries, to identify and categorize consumers with similar values, attitudes and aspirations influencing their shopping behavior and retail technology adoption. 

The analysis unveiled six specific audiences, each with a distinct motivation, ensuring retailers can accurately target groups with the right mobile technology, the best advice and the most useful offers and promotions.

For retailers defining their in-store mobility strategies, it will be good to know that five out of the six shopper segments have an increased interest and appetite for using mobile technology for their shopping journey. And that demand will only grow as more digital-first generations get older.  

But right now, there is a clear opportunity too, as mobile solutions can already be used for a vast array of positive consumer interactions, whether before a visit in-store, to order via click-and-collect, to pay using self-checkout or to boost loyalty and customer experience. Such innovations are low-cost and can be done at speed too. 

Understand who your shoppers are

To make the most from these technological enhancements and integrations, it pays to know your shopper personas. 

Aspirational Tech Fans: They’re all about new experiences; seven in 10 are always looking out for the latest tech and gadgets. They’re sociable, frequent and spontaneous shoppers, with 68% shopping several times a week and two-thirds doing it for immediate consumption. Besides being the most technology-savvy segment, it´s not only brands and trends that attract them to stores, but also the opportunity of human interaction.

Modern Convenience Seekers: They’re all about seamless, omnichannel experiences and information transparency. Often working and living in cities, they are digital natives and high earners. For this group, their shopping visits are often based on which retailers have the best deals. They prize efficiency, with 97% gravitating to a self-checkout if there’s a queue. They are keen to use mobile devices to gather information and make their journey more efficient.

Hesitant Potentials: Stuck between a traditional and modern lifestyle, they know about tech and like the idea of it, but they still need to trust it. They are growing in comfort financially, usually aged in their 30s and live outside the city. This group have downloaded grocery apps — on average two are on their phones — but they still use cash and shop often in smaller baskets.

Hands-on Pragmatists: Efficiency is the keyword here for this financially well-off group, who opt for a healthier lifestyle. Half (51%) shop for immediate consumption, which is not a surprise given they are busy people who want immediate gratification when in a store. They hate to see products out of stock. They show no demand for human interaction and prefer shopper journeys that cater to their preference for self-sufficiency. When they adopt in-store mobility solutions, they prefer mobile handheld scanners over using their own smartphone. They generally expect retailers to offer ready-to-use technology that they do not have to invest their own resources in. 

Sensible Socializers: Ease is what they look for in their shopping journey. The physical product experience draws them to stores. Typically in their 40s, they spend sensibly, with no interest in chasing trends. Though they prefer human interaction, they’ll use technology if it is easy to understand and solves an acute friction in their journey. For example, 85% will use a self-checkout for a small-basket purchase, even though they still prefer fixed checkouts. 

Well-Balanced Traditionalists: They have their favored habits, and these should be respected. They know what they need and approach their shopping trips well prepared with a written shopping list in hand. As their shopping routines work perfectly for them, they see no need to have any of it changed by technology. They appreciate in-person services that facilitate human connections. Hence, they also don’t mind queues at the fixed checkout. 

Growing retail through engagement

Knowing who your shoppers are, and what they like and want, is critical to retailers’ growth. Each of our six personas is very different, but among them there are some common desires and themes. For example: 

  • They value consistent pricing across channels 
  • They expect to have a range of payment options
  • They hate to queue, but some have more tolerance for it
  • They prize convenience but also expect support when needed
  • They will use self-checkout if it means saving themselves time
  • They show loyalty, but want offers and discounts in return

But there are differences too: 

  • Aspirational Tech Fans want offers and discounts provided digitally – 90% prefer to redeem points via smartphones
  • 92% of Modern Convenience Seekers want an acceleration of shopping via self-scanning or self-checkout
  • Hesitant Potentials have a little anxiety around privacy issues, they want to know mobile shopping is secure
  • Hands-on Pragmatists prefer to use retailers’ self-scanning tech, seeing these devices as more powerful and accurate 
  • Sensible Socializers value having in-store associates educating them on how to use a store-owned scanning device
  • Well-Balanced Traditionalists love cash, and manned checkouts, so these need to be kept as part of the in-store mix

Innovation that’s tailored to individuals

Thankfully, the mobile solutions provided by Zebra and Diebold Nixdorf are suitable for each of the six personas we have identified, despite the differences in their behaviors and aspirations.

The technology itself is a single solution that can be adopted to meet the individual needs of each shopper in your stores today, whether you’re aiming for in-store innovation, speedier shopping journeys, a greater omnichannel experience or to harness new technologies such as Augmented Reality.

It’s clear many shoppers will embrace this enhanced mobile journey immediately if they see the benefits, while others will do so when educated and encouraged to trust it. For retailers happy to work hard to understand how their different groups of shoppers see this experience, it is a momentous mobile step forward.

To learn more about how this is all possible — in less time than you imagine — and to understand how Diebold Nixdorf’s and Zebra’s technology can help achieve it, download our Personas report.

As we strive to create a shopping basket without any boundaries, retailers are in a powerful position to adopt new technology that can be deployed quickly and succeed in putting consumers in control. Personalize your customers’ experiences and deliver convenience with a true seamless mobile shopping journey.

Author: Anja Popp

Senior Analyst, Global Market Intelligence, Diebold Nixdorf

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