Saturday, June 25, 2022

Customer loyalty proves precarious

Building brand trust, creating hybrid shopping and delivering personalisation at scale are key to meeting customer expectations according to Salesforce’s State of the Connected Customer Report ANZ.

Released in partnership with the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) this week, the fifth edition of the report reveals 61 per cent of customers have switched brands at least once in the last year.

Jo Gaines, Salesforce Area Vice President for Retail and Consumer Goods, says customers are reassessing established brand loyalties as their priorities and behaviours shift.

“At a time when it’s never been easier for customers to switch brands and loyalty proves elusive, retailers need to focus on creating great experiences across digital and physical and appreciate their customers recency and history with their brand,” she says.

Key findings

The report surveyed 16,936 consumers and business buyers from 29 countries including 654 from across ANZ. It analyses how, and to what extent, customer expectations and behaviours have shifted amid the global pandemic and the new digital-first customer engagement landscape.

The research found:

  • 90% of customers in ANZ believe trust in companies becomes more important in times of change, however 71% lose that trust when there are inconsistencies across multiple touch points in an organisation.
  • 48% lose trust when they receive communications from brands that don’t match their interests.
  • In the next three years customers expect to use more augmented reality (50%), video appointments (55%), virtual experiences (53%), and social media to shop (50%)
  • 57% of customers say they’re open to businesses using artificial intelligence to improve their experiences.
  • 51% of customers are willing to share their personal information with a company in exchange for personalised offers or discounts, with 41% expecting offers from companies to always be personalised
  • 48% say personalised rewards would increase their use of loyalty programs

Impatient shoppers

Paul Zahra, ARA CEO says customers are now more impatient than ever before.

“If they don’t have a positive experience when they enter your store or go on your website, they’re very quick to move on and search out rival brands and products,” he says.

“This research is an important reminder for businesses on the importance of knowing your customers – what products they like, the communication channels they prefer and the personalised offers that work best.”

Download the full report here.

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