Returning customers & changing behaviour

Published: 27th May 2021

Shopping trollies all stacked together

Is the in-store experience changing for the better?

As pandemic restrictions ease and shoppers return to stores, what can retailers do to inspire their customers in a landscape that’s changed in so many ways?

The good news in the UK is that the pace of the vaccination roll-out, alongside relaxing restrictions, is encouraging consumers back into physical stores. Research by Kantar showed that take-home grocery sales rose by 6.5% in the four weeks to April 18, as more people were vaccinated and the UK started to unlock with the wider opening of retail. At the same time, online sales growth has halved since the height of the pandemic, underlining supermarket shoppers’ desire to browse and buy in-store.

Understanding customer behaviour

Across the retail sector, brands and retailers are facing up to a number of challenges – and opportunities. A recent roundtable by Retail Gazette and K3 found that many retailers are looking to innovative collaborations to inspire their customers. From mixing well-known names with new start-up brands, to inviting pop-up stores into their retail space.

During the pandemic, shoppers discovered new brands online and explored local shops and independents. The line between the physical and digital world became more blurred and fluid. Consumers increasingly expected their favourite brands to act ethically and sustainably and be clear about their values. Understanding how customer behaviour has changed will help retailers encourage consumers back into store, and beyond that, start to reimagine retail for a new era of shopping.

Adapting retail environments

Shoppers are increasingly looking for a more exciting and rewarding retail experience, so creating an enticing store environment that encourages people to browse and buy is evermore key. Adaptability is also essential, with retailers needing the flexibility to bring in and promote guest brands and collaborations, while staying true to their own brand ethos and style. Other opportunities highlighted by the Retail Gazette roundtable include improving customer service and sustainability, to give consumers more reasons to shop in-store.

With our in-depth understanding of retail environments and changing customer behaviour, we can help you create point of sale, display and packaging solutions tailored to your specific needs. For example, pop-up style environments for guest brands, concepts embracing innovative, recyclable materials to share your sustainability story alongside your products, or packaging to align your customer service approach in-store and online.

Whatever you need, we’ll start by looking at your unique challenge or opportunity and create a solution to achieve the results you want. Changing customer behaviour accelerated by the pandemic is a challenge for retailers, but it’s also an opportunity to connect with your customers like never before.

Wilko Polypropylene Dump Bins

See how we helped Wilko create a durable, flexible, fully-recyclable display solution that went on to be used for multiple seasonal and product campaigns, as well as branded product displays throughout their stores – thanks to its small footprint, easily re-stockable design and generous branding area.

View Wilko project

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