Retailers breaking marketing promises, says survey

An alarming number of retail brands are still failing to deliver on the image they present in their advertising and marketing, according to new research.

Half of all people polled in a survey by shopper marketing agency Live & Breathe said they looked forward to going to a store because of the image it portrayed, only to find it didn’t always have publicised products available.

Another 38% said staff didn’t live up to the store image, and 44% found the quality of products disappointing.

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Live & Breathe surveyed more than 3,000 British shoppers during its research.

A lack of product availability was cited by 55% of women as the main problem with stores not living up to their image, with a further 50% disappointed by product quality. A total of 38% of women said store staff didn’t live up to the retailer’s image.

Similarly, 45% of men said a lack of availability was a problem, with 38% disappointed by product quality.Nearly a third of men said staff didn’t live up to a store’s image.

The most common problem shoppers encounter regularly in stores is long queues. A total of 48% said queuing to pay for items is a problem.

Crowded shop floors (36%), shop floor temperature (33%), not being able to find staff and unhelpful staff (25%) make up the top five problems shoppers regularly encounter.

Nick Gray, managing director of Live & Breathe, says that with so much emphasis on advertising and marketing a brand, it can be easy for retailers to forget that the work really begins once customers enter their store.

“Shopper experience is reliant on them not being let down anywhere along their path to purchase from sofa to store,” he says. “This research shows just how important it is to ensure stores live up to the brand image — if shoppers are not satisfied with what they find, they will move on somewhere else, either to a competitor’s high street offer or online. It is a far harder task to persuade them to return.”

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