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Shopper Decision Journey

12 July 2016

Purchasing decisions made by the consumer in-store are often different from their brand preference and buying intention. Why?  Obtaining insights into the Shopper Decision Journey is crucial for both manufacturers and retailers, because 70% of purchase decisions are made in front of the shopping isle. How can a trade marketer hit the right note with a shopper who is about to buy a product?


Trends involving shoppers

Developments involving changing decision-making units (DMUs), the decrease in brand loyalty and fixed patterns becoming more flexible have all had a major impact on the retail landscape that is becoming more and more complex.

Additionally, research shows that shoppers’ characteristics are changing. With individualization and an increasing need to maintain control over one’s own life, shoppers have become more critical and demanding. Nowadays, shoppers not only know more about the products, they also expect more from the product and their experience in store.

Technological trends show that there is an increasing need for expression (online) and connections with people from all over the world. This trend is visible in shoppers’ decisions as they become more and more subject to input from peers, online reviews and competing brands.

Thanks to these trends, the shopper experience has changed and retailers and manufacturers are facing new challenges. The complexity of reaching customers in a relevant, distinctive manner is ever increasing. On the bright side, these challenges offer numerous opportunities to get to know shoppers better, and to gain relevance by optimizing your interaction with them.


What is shopper research?

We have a variety of research techniques available to map a Shopper Decision Journey. These provide our client with highly detailed insights of the (side)steps shoppers take, and the deeper motivations that lie at the root of their decisions. Each step taken by the shopper is explained in terms of functional, emotional and expressive factors:

  • the five W’s (who, what, where, when and why) create a profile of the shopper and put it in context
  • the five H’s (how, how many, how much, how often and how long) relate primarily to their shop visit

In shopper research we focus on the connection between shopper and product found in-store, as well as the connection that is established before and after possible purchase(s). It is in these moments that a connection is made between product, shopper and store.


How does shopper research work in practice?

By completing the shopper’s Decision Journey together with us, you will get concrete answers to questions such as:

  • How do shoppers actually buy once they are in-store? (ShopperConnect)
  • Do my products stand out on the shelf and which elements of my packaging have a positive or negative effect on the valuation or brand values? (Eyetracking and Conjoint Analysis)
  • How can I make better use of my data on penetration and volume, and combine it with information about shoppers’ behaviour?
  • What are my shoppers’ subconscious drivers and barriers, and how can I influence these? (InnerWorld and Neuromarketing)
  • What effect does my sampling campaign have? (SampleScope)
  • What does my shoppers’ daily life look like, and which routine behaviour is relevant when it comes to purchasing product? (e-Safari)
  • What is the best way to bring my target audience to life? (Personas)


What does this offer you?

To rank higher than the competition, a brand needs to be relevant both before, during and after a purchase is made. Communication, ambassadorship and perception are key in this process. To do this well, you need to know and understand shoppers’ preferences and behaviour. When you know every step in the Shopper’s Decision journey, your brand and your service have added value.

Once you push the right buttons, you cannot only strengthen your relationship with shoppers, but also increase the impact of (in-store) marketing and optimize your retail and communication strategy.

Would you like to know more about the Shopper Decision Journey? Please get in touch.



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