Buzzworthy insights – New Shopping Experiences

11.22.2021 Buzzworthy Insights
By BDS Strategy and Analytics

New Shopping Experiences

YouTube launching livestream shopping & Facebook launches Shop in Groups.

YouTube is stepping into the livestream shopping arena by partnering with some of their leading influencers to take part in “YouTube Holiday Stream and Shop”. The livestreams will feature exclusive products, special discounts, and product giveaways, as well as new additions arriving to physical stores that will be showcased for in-store purchase. In addition to notable influencers, YouTubers can partner with Shopify or Stage Ten to enable livestreams on their YouTube channel, allowing them to feature selected products. According to a new QuickBooks survey, this comes at a time when consumers are looking for new small businesses to support, with 93% of consumers noting that supporting small businesses is more important than ever before and 48% more likely to try new businesses than ever before.

Facebook is launching their own social shopping experience, Shop in Groups, which will feature many different social shopping aspects and merchandise opportunities for groups on Facebook. One feature, Product Recommendations in Groups will showcase products that other members of that group have bought, as well as guidance requests if you want assistance in choosing. Alongside this, Top Product Mentions, featuring products that are recommended most by peers in groups you are in. Like YouTube, Facebook is also launching a live shopping experience that allows creators to highlight the brands and products they love. (View source 1, source 2, source 3)

Cyber Security Concerns

E-commerce has exploded due to the pandemic and with it came an increase in cybersecurity attacks, with nearly one-third of companies (31%) surveyed in the new Cornell study indicating they have experienced a data breach, 89% of those indicating they have been attacked more than once in the last year. Interestingly, 74% of companies surveyed use more than one cybersecurity system with a near 50/50 split on whether it is governed by one department (51%) or multiple departments (49%). With cybersecurity now top of the mind for nearly all businesses, many are welcoming involvement from the government (87%) to fight cybersecurity threats and enhance policy (84%). The leading concerns for cybersecurity issues were payment integrity at 59%, malware (58%), and risk management (57%). (View source)

Mobile Empowerment

City furniture utilizes mobile CRM tools & consumer empowerment within stores.

As retailers look for new ways to empower their store associates, City Furniture is utilizing mobile devices to optimize the ways they can interact with customers while in-store. In their new pilot program, they utilized iPads, Zello instant voice messenger, and Pryme push-to-talk buttons. Store associates are able to activate Zello with a click of a button, allowing them to quickly respond to messages or access their iPad tech features. In addition, City Furniture has found it to be a great way to broadcast announcements, train employees, and allow associates to ask for help from managers and fellow employees. While they provided no actual data, City Furniture credits this program to higher employee engagement and lower turnover.

This comes at a time when brands are seeing a return to in-store shopping, especially for the holiday season. With this return, they are wanting fast seamless shopping experiences that are tailored to them. One way to accomplish this, optimizing mobile commerce (m-commerce) to allow fast and easy to use mobile usage while in-store as consumers are using their devices to complete a range of tasks from pulling up coupons to reading online reviews. Additionally, brands will want to optimize their apps and mobile experiences in general as eMarketer predicts m-commerce will account for 10.4% of all retail sales in the US. (View source 1, source 2)

Resale Market Booming

Consumers are more open to receiving secondhand apparel as gifts.

Sustainability has become a top priority in consumer minds, especially among younger Millennials and Gen-Z, creating a boom within the resale market. As consumers are worried about gifts being more expensive this year, supply chain delays, and limited inventories, nearly half of respondents (49%) of a new GlobalData survey indicate they are considering alternative gifts this season, such as secondhand apparel. And respondents are accepting of this, with 62% indicating that buying secondhand apparel/fashion gifts is more socially acceptable now than it was five years ago and 66% are open to receiving a secondhand gift, with Gen Z the most accepting at 72%. As for motivation, Gen Z firstly attributes sustainability as their main motivation (64%) compared to 54% overall, with cost saving coming in second at 62%. (View source)

Vaccine Mandate Suspended

Following the appeals of many businesses and organizations, including the NRF, the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit have temporarily halted the vaccine mandate, saying it “grossly exceeds the authority of the agency that issued it”. OSHA was told by the court that they “take no steps to implement or enforce the ETS until further court order”. On November 16th, a federal judicial panel assigned the Sixth Circuit Appeals Court to handle the lawsuits, OSHA will reestablish deadlines pending the Circuit Court’s design. Ultimately, many say the fate of the mandate will be decided by the United States Supreme Court, but they are yet to interfere with any COVID-19 vaccine mandates. (View source)

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