The last decade, and the last few months in particular, have seen a significant shift in how consumers make their purchases. With an ever-widening choice of goods and services due to accelerated online shopping, and instant access to information and reviews, buyers are typically very well informed before engaging with sales staff or visiting a store. They are also much more confident when making their purchase decisions.
In a noisy world where people are inundated by countless ads daily, many consumers dislike the feeling that they are being sold to and are taking steps to filter out unwanted advertising. The modern consumer prefers to ‘pull’ information rather than allow a business to ‘push’ it to them.
Continuous advancements in technology makes it easy for consumers to choose the marketing messages they want to see, blocking out what isn’t relevant or interesting to them and honing in on the messages from their favourite brands.
The majority of consumers start their search for a product or service online and will research several options before making a decision. Shoppers today feel more confident about the knowledge they obtain from online reviews than the information provided by sales staff. In fact, only ten per cent of consumers say they find manufacturers and service providers to be their most trusted source when researching.*
On top of this shift in buyer influence, consumers also expect more from the businesses where they make purchases. This is why loyalty programs play an important role in the modern marketing landscape, by delivering the added value consumers simply expect from a business or brand.
To stay connected and influence today’s modern consumer, businesses need to be acutely aware of their online presence, monitor social media and review websites closely, and ensure their own website is accurate and up to date. Providing information where consumers are looking for it and listening to what they’re saying is the best way to make your business stand out from the rest and earn the business of modern consumers.
* Deloite: The Deloite Consumer Review: The Growing Power Of Consumers