Consumers hate chatbots but interested in VR, says GPShopper report
Nordstrom, American Eagle and several retailers launched chatbots in the holiday season to better assist consumers shopping for gifts. The new chatbot technology is a recent addition of numerous technological advances that were introduced over the years to enhance the in-store shopping experience. According to GPShopper, these technological advancements are hit-or-miss, with many being misses including chatbots and smart mirrors.
GPShopper released its Reality of Retail Tech report this week that found that customers like self checkout features and virtual reality but are resistant to chatbots, smart mirrors and smart shelves. Self-Checkout and Virtual Reality scored 71% and 68%, respectively, on the Consumer Consciousness Scale, while Virtual Assistants scored 35%, chatbots scored 19%, smart mirrors scored 10% and smart shelves scored 7%.
The report also found that 59% of consumers don’t want to use chatbots while shopping. Only 9% of consumers think chatbots will positively impact their shopping experience, and 21% felt that virtual assistants like Amazon Echo and Google home will improve their shopping experience.
Respondents were very interested in using virtual reality or augmented reality to enhance their shopping experience. 46% of consumers want to use VR to try out clothes or accessories without having to walk into a store, and 58% want to use augmented reality to see how certain items might look in a different color before buying it and to see how something looks in their house before buying.
In addition, 24% of respondents wanted to use VR so they don’t have to go into a store anymore. Finally, nearly half of respondents are interested in where products are made and want to use VR to see where and how a product is made.
“Developments in mobile are further giving way to more advanced technology like virtual reality and chatbots, being brought into the shopping experience. However, with so much technology available to retailers, it currently feels like everyone is just throwing ideas at the wall and seeing what sticks,” said Maya Mikhailov, co-founder and CMO of GPShopper.
Mikhailov co-founded GPShopper with CEO Alex Muller. The mobile commerce and engagement platform partners with retailers and brands to create custom app experiences for their customers. GPShopper works with a number of retailers including Steve Madden, Bebe, PacSun and Best Buy. Retailers need to find new approaches to driving traffic to stores since it is being eclipsed by e-commerce.
“Smart retailers know how crucial it is to keep their finger on the pulse between an increasingly savvy shopper and the potential for technology to drive the industry forward,” added Mikhailov. “We commissioned this research to gain that critical insight into how consumer awareness and opinion of this technology stacks up against what retailers are actually putting into play.”
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