More than a third of shoppers have stopped buying a brand or using a company because they were uncomfortable with something they did or stood for, according to a new industry report by shopper research agency Shoppercentric
The research, entitled WindowON…Trust Issues, was carried out across 1,048 UK shoppers aged 18+ and looks at how shoppers feel about the retailers and brands they purchase from.
Danielle Pinnington, Managing Director at Shoppercentric, said: “Over the last few years, with the rise of social media and 24/7 news, it has become clear that consumers are increasingly aware of shortfalls in the behaviour of the companies they buy from. We wanted to take a closer look at this area, see how deep rooted this is, and explore the degree to which a mindset can drive action. If consumers are as cynical as our research indicates, it highlights the need for brands and retailers to be more aware of how trust issues can develop and what they need to do to avoid this. There’s the potential for serious impact on businesses when trust issues lead to a negative change in behaviour, something retailers can ill-afford to happen.”
The report reveals that 46% of UK shoppers fail to agree at all with the statement that they are trustful of others. These shoppers are also less likely to agree that: Most people are trustful of others, most people are trustworthy and most people are basically honest. Almost 60% of these fell into the 25-54 age group.
Shoppers rate corporate retailers and brands poorly in relation to putting consumer interests first (in comparison to other institutions and businesses).
That said, more than 70% of UK shoppers agree that they want to feel good about the retailers they use, and that they want the money they spend to go to companies they trust.
Women were generally more positive towards all institutions measured but even more likely to feel independents and local retailers put consumer interests first.
Key factors that irritate shoppers were promotions that aren’t as good as they sound, brands that reduce their size or quality but keep the same price and retailers and brands whose changes negatively impact the shoppers, while allowing them to profit.
Products that end up being smaller in reality than a pack suggests also ranked high for irritation along with a lack of honesty during bad publicity.
Other key irritants cited by shoppers included retailers/brands who are trying to be manipulative, short sell by/best buy dates, unclear or misleading contents labels and retailers who promise good service, but don’t have the staff when shoppers need them.