US consumers say they want a more personalized retail experience, yet remain reluctant to disclose personal information for fear of how retailers will use it. In turn, Accenture recently conducted a survey to explore the issues surrounding digital trust and customer expectations around a personalized shopping experience.
The survey findings concluded that retailers should approach and market personalization as a “value exchange” as well as be transparent in how customer data will be utilized. As a result, consumers may be more willing to trade personal data for something in return.
Here’s where a little give and take comes into play. In exchange for personal data, the Accenture survey discovered consumers want access to exclusive deals (64%), automatic crediting for coupons and loyalty points (64%), a one-time discount (61%) or special offers (61%).
Once the consumer agrees to give up personal information, the obligation to create and maintain digital trust then falls upon the retailer. To accomplish this feat, the first step is to test how customers respond to a particular personalization strategy. As leading retailers know, every customer is different and what is acceptable to some will be an invasion of privacy to others.
For instance, Millennials are more likely than Baby Boomers to look for advice or recommendations on in-store purchases. When it comes to the online experience, only 30% of Baby Boomers are comfortable with a drug store telling them to stop buying items that could react negatively with other medicines. On the flip side, nearly half of Millennials were receptive to this type of personalization tactic.
Below are some additional key findings from the Accenture study with regards to tailoring customer communications and experiences. These tactics seem to be the safest bet for retailers continuing to search for balance in the game of give and take:
- 82% welcome in-store communications and automatic discounts at checkout for loyalty points or coupons
- 64% want the retailer’s website to optimize by device (i.e. desktop, tablet, mobile)
- 59% like getting online promotional offers for items they strongly consider purchasing
- 57% don’t mind receiving real-time promotions