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Consumer Research


Get inside shopper's heads

Get inside shopper's heads

A new global shopper study, “Shopper Decisions Made In-Store” (SDMIS) reveals what’s truly happening in the world’s retail shopping aisles.
Over 14,000 shopper interviews were conducted in 700 retail outlets across 24 markets globally.

The OgilvyAction study spanned five retail channels (three in the UK) across six product categories (eight in the UK) to examine how shopper decisions differ across shopping channels, product categories as well as brands, and how those decisions vary by country and shopper profile.
The widely quoted statistic “70 percent of shopper purchase decisions are made in store” only went so far. What marketers really need is to understand the different kinds of decisions that shoppers are making, and then be able to generate insights that will help them develop smarter and more targeted programmes to activate their brands in store.
The SDMIS study enables OgilvyAction to develop specific shopper insights for marketers whether they are targeting shoppers buying soft drinks from convenience stores in the United States, skin care products from pharmacies in London, coffee from supermarkets in Asia, or shampoo in Latin America. One thing that the study does highlight very clearly is that shopper decision making varies significantly by market, category and channel.
Some of the most compelling findings include:
-Nearly 30 percent of shoppers around the world wait until they’re in the store to decide which brand they will buy and, in the UK, this rises to 33%.
-In addition, one in ten shoppers globally and 16% in the UK simply change their minds in store and buy a different brand to that which they had planned.
-Perhaps most significant is that, across the categories surveyed, almost 15 percent of UK shoppers bought from a category they had not planned to buy from before entering the store.
-Quite alarming is that over one in ten shoppers leaves a product they planned to buy on the shelf and walk away empty-handed. And in the US, this rises to almost 20%.  This statistic alone represents many millions of £ in new purchases up for grabs by marketers who can successfully activate their brands in-store.
Armed with in-depth shopper insights, brand marketers can make better strategic investment decisions and use the store more effectively as a vehicle to build sales and equity in their brands.
“We all know the point of sale is the ultimate moment of truth for brands today,” said Steve Harding, CEO, EAME, OgilvyAction. “Getting it right and improving ROI is something that keeps many of us awake at night. Our clients need to know what's driving shopper decisions and we are committed to helping them win where it matters most.”
Andrew Aylett, planning director at OgilvyAction London says, “Above all, the study tells us that one size does not fit all. Whether 40%, 50% or 70% of shopper decisions are made in store is not the point. The answer is so much more interesting than that. The study proves that shopper decision making in retail varies hugely across market and within market and we are only just scraping the surface. 

It is a highly complex and dynamic environment - we and our clients can exploit the opportunities therein if we really understand what is going on.”
"The study demonstrates that shoppers behave differently across categories and channels." noted Jordi Connor, head of insight at OgilvyAction London.

"It follows therefore, that the more a brand is able to learn about how shoppers behave in their particular category and the channels they are present in, the higher their chances are of improving their performance. Furthermore, as the economic climate worsens, this knowledge could prove crucial in ensuring a brand addresses changing consumer needs and concerns at point of sale."
The SDMIS study is endorsed by Harvard Business School Professor John Quelch, whose 1983 Harvard Business Review paper proved to be highly portentous.
"Managing activities at the point of purchase to gain competitive advantage is even more important today than it was when Better Marketing at the Point of Purchase study was first published in 1983,” said Quelch. “OgilvyAction's wide-ranging global shopper study is a significant step forward in offering marketers a better understanding not only into why it is important, but what they can do about it.”
“SDMIS is a big step toward helping our clients win in The Last Mile,” said Harding, “We are committed to digging deeper and this is an excellent platform to gain new learning.”

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