Ipsos Retail Performance. Blog.


Shopper Behaviour

Employing more than one million people and worth an estimated £17 billion, there’s little doubt the UK beauty retail industry is big business. Footfall volume and shopper behaviour habits help shape the sector, with the competitiveness amongst brands helping ensure sales are higher than ever before.

In a highly competitive market, it’s inevitable that some products won’t perform as well as expected in comparison to the competition. With this in mind, a leading cosmetics brand called on our expertise to rectify the issue of poor sales in regards to their moisturiser product.

The objective

A behavioural solution was implemented over a period of seven days, using fixed cameras. The aim was to dig into the granular detail needed to monitor engagement at a shelf level.

Our findings

Looking at the store floor plan, 71% of people turned right on entry but moved past the first fixtures before stopping to look at anything. The client’s moisturiser was in an area where customers were frequently interacting with items and it naturally became an area of interest, despite not being in the most visually prominent location.

This disproved an initial theory that poor sales were due to poor product location. Although the moisturiser wasn’t placed on the foremost fixture, the majority of people in store walked past this area. In fact, the aisle in question was the highest performing area in store for interaction and touch.

Looking at the fixture where the moisturiser resided, it soon became apparent where the decision process to buy broke down. Initially, the product performed well at the ‘stop and look’ stage, however, once the buyer was at the purchase/conversion stage only 19% of shoppers converted into a sale.

The price point was unlikely to have been the primary factor, as the moisturiser would not have been picked up if it had appeared too expensive. Simply put, the moisturiser appeared to ‘fail’ at the comparison stage with competitors. It was discovered all products in this location were both looked at and touched in equal measure.

Our recommendations

Overall, 81% of shoppers chose not to buy the brand in comparison to competitors. This information points to the recommendation that the packaging needs to be reviewed in order for it to be more engaging, informative or attractive to the consumer.

Although the findings suggest the moisturiser wasn’t in a detrimental location after all, it was suggested it might be beneficial to trial the effect of moving away from its high performing competitors. This may not guarantee results but would supply a good indication of brand pull in a new location.

The importance of bringing together all this information is paramount for success for brands and retailers alike. The detailed insight into consumer shopper habits gives brands a key advantage in terms of standing out from the crowd and should always be utilised where possible.

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