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Frictionless shopping in retail - Thematic Research

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  • 34 Pages
  • April 2019
  • Region: Global
  • GlobalData
  • ID: 4773543
Frictionless shopping in retail - Thematic Research


Within retail over the past 20 years, the internet has not only afforded consumers significantly heightened connectivity between each other and retailers, but has also led to consumers having the ability to rapidly gather information on prices at other retailers, examine issues around product sourcing and sustainability, and crucially, buy retail goods without the need to visit a physical store. For retailers with an already existing physical network, this has presented numerous, well-documented challenges.

The time taken from the first point of contact between a retailer and a consumer, up to the point the consumer possesses the desired product, can (generally) be described as unwanted “friction” for the customer in the shopping journey. For any given shopping journey in both the offline and online channel, this can encompass a wide variety of issues: till-queue length, the inability to easily locate products, slow delivery times, unsuitable payment processes, etc. And with the “increasingly busy” lifestyle with which consumers often describe themselves as having, ridding as many hurdles in the shopping journey - or creating a “frictionless” experience - is becoming a vital point of differentiation for retailers worldwide.

A key reason for the online channel’s enduring success has been its inherent, natural avoidance of points of friction early on in the shopping journey. As well as circumnavigating the need for a consumer to deviate from their daily routine to visit a physical location, online retailers usually allow for shoppers to easily store payment information for quicker order placement in the future. To say that this process is resonating with shoppers is an understatement, and little other evidence is needed than the success of global e-commerce titan Amazon - whose success is founded on continuously forging ahead of competitors in breaking down barriers within the shopper journey.

But while bricks and mortar retailers are generally suffering at the hands of online specialists, there are certainly topics within frictionless shopping that they can excel at. Most notably, the ability to get rid of the waiting time for the delivery of products to the hands of the buyer; although same-day delivery services are impressive, a suitably motivated shopper will likely be able to find a comparable product in a much shorter amount of time at a store.

Frictionless shopping is therefore an unavoidable theme for retailers across all channels and countries. This report breaks down the seven fundamental topics within the theme, retail’s leaders and laggards in the sector, and provides an overview of relevant macroeconomic, technological and retail trends that retailers must be aware about to compete more thoroughly over the course of the next decade.

Key Highlights from the report “Frictionless Shopping in Retail - Thematic Research”:
  • Frictionless shopping impacts each shopper journey differently, with broad differences between offline and online as well as infrequent and frequent purchases.

  • Better awareness of the security of customer data is vital for retailers with large online operations, as post-GDPR regulations will continue to focus on customer protection preservation.

  • Retailers must offer multiple payment options for shoppers as the range of payment possibilities diversifies

  • The success of e-tail giant Amazon has largely been based on its deference to frictionless shopping, commonly leading the way on issues such as fulfilment speed , payment options and ease of access.

  • Break the frictionless shopping experience down to shopper journey type, by purchase frequency and channel, to describe how the seven major topics (ease of access, fulfilment, multichannel alignment, payment options, personalisation, and positive friction security) impact consumers in a variety of scenarios.

  • Investigate how the dominant technological, macroeconomical and retail trends are effecting frictionless shopping, and how they will go on to do so over the course of the next decade.

  • Profiles of international retailers with a significant focus on frictionless shopping, as well as provides analysis on relevant mergers, acquisitions and disruptors in the retail market.

Reasons to Buy
  • Break down the complexity of frictionless shopping into relevant topics for your speicific business, so you can create a more dynamic and effective strategy to keep customers.

  • Understand the history of fricitonless shopping and how it continues to develop today, allowing you to grasp a wider view of changes in consumer behaviour and how it will impact your markets.

  • Explore how technological trends (such as AI, AR and 5G) are enabling retail to evolve, so you can better position yourself for long-term success.

  • Discover how the world-leading retailers, across the US, Eurozone and Asia, are investing in frictionless shopping technologies, allowing you greater clarity on which frictionless shopping techniques are proving successful and where the best investments are for greater customer retention

Table of Contents

  • Overview

  • Definition of frictionless shopping

  • Timeline

  • Trends

  • Technology trends

  • Macroeconomic trends

  • Retail trends

  • Seven frictionless shopping themes

  • Ease of access

  • Fulfilment

  • Multichannel alignment

  • Payment options

  • Personalisation

  • Positive friction

  • Security

  • Companies section

  • The US players

  • The Asian players

  • The European players

  • Disruptors

  • Mergers and acquisitions

  • Technology briefing

  • Appendix

List of Tables
  • Frictionless shopping leaders and laggards in the retail sector

  • Frictionless shopping leaders and laggards - ease of access

  • Frictionless shopping leaders and laggards - fulfilment

  • Frictionless shopping leaders and laggards - multichannel alignment

  • Frictionless shopping leaders and laggards - payment options

  • Frictionless shopping leaders and laggards - personalisation

  • Frictionless shopping leaders and laggards - positive friction

  • Consumer responses to questions on GDPR and data handling

  • Frictionless shopping leaders and laggards - security

List of Figures
  • Relevance of each of the seven frictionless shopping topics to shopper journey

  • Shopper journey analysis - frequent offline purchases

  • Shopper journey analysis - infrequent offline purchases

  • Shopper journey analysis - frequent online purchases

  • Shopper journey analysis - infrequent online purchases

Companies Mentioned (Partial List)

A selection of companies mentioned in this report includes, but is not limited to:

  • Aldi

  • Alibaba

  • Alphabet

  • Amazon

  • Apple

  • Argos

  • ASDA

  • ASOS

  • Aspectiva

  • B&Q

  • Best Buy

  • boohoo.com

  • Boots

  • Calypso AI

  • Carpetright

  • Carrefour

  • Costco

  • DFS

  • Dispatch

  • Dixons Carphone

  • Drawbridge

  • Dreams

  • E. Leclerc

  • Facebook

  • Google

  • H&M

  • Homebase

  • IKEA

  • InMobi

  • JD Sports

  • JD.com

  • John Lewis

  • Kroger

  • K-supermarket

  • Lacoste

  • Lidl

  • Macy's

  • Marks & Spencer

  • Morrisons

  • Next

  • Nike

  • Ocado

  • Poundland

  • Primark

  • Sainsbury's

  • Seven & I Holdings

  • Space NK

  • Tapi

  • Target

  • TaskRabbit

  • Tesco

  • Walgreens

  • Walmart

  • Wayfair

  • Wickes

  • Zara