Price is no longer decisive when choosing a retailer – Retail Performance Ranking 2023

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Price is no longer decisive when choosing a retailer – Retail Performance Ranking 2023

Value for money is still an important factor when choosing a retailer, but other factors have started to become more important. For the modern Polish consumer, trust and a wide selection of products are crucial. This is the main conclusion of the first Polish edition of the “Retail Performance Ranking” survey. We can also learn from it that the importance of a consistent experience in offline and online channels is growing, as well as sustainability issues.

Trust and wide choice are key to success

Although the economic downturn and rising prices are forcing Polish consumers to store prudently, it turns out that price is no longer the most important factor in choosing a store. For Poles, trust and wide choice are now more important. Among the most important criteria for a retailer’s overall assessment, they ranked first and second, winning 16% and 11.8% respectively.

Value for money came in only third with 10.4%. Thus, price is now relegated to the background, and this is true even for food suppliers and online shopping, where price competition is particularly strong. The quality of customer service also plays an important role, coming in fourth place with 9% – in the case of online shopping platforms, it has even more influence on the overall rating than price.

The results of the survey show that, despite the not so good economic situation, the modern consumer is increasingly demanding. When choosing a store and brand, he is not only guided by a low price, but by their good reputation, and he is looking for comprehensive solutions that will ensure his comfort and satisfaction with shopping.

Poles still value shopping in physical stores

Although recent years have seen rapid growth in e-commerce, the study “What Shapes the Choices of Polish Consumers in 2023? Retail Performance Ranking 2023” shows that excellence in digital criteria (e.g., website or mobile app) has less impact on a retailer’s overall rating than excellence in general criteria, such as brand trust, wide product selection or sustainability.

Of the 51 retailers surveyed with brick-and-mortar, only four scored higher for digital excellence than for physical stores. Moreover, two of them belong to the electronics and home appliances segment, which is inherently more open to the online channel.

Consumers are eager to check offers in the online channel, but are more likely to buy in physical stores. Across all multichannel segments surveyed, between 31% and 79% of respondents said they check offers online, but only between 12% and 74% buy in this channel. Only in the segments of electronics and home appliances, books and children’s products were online purchases more frequent than offline ones.

The ROPO (Research Online, Purchase Offline) effect is thus still more common than the reverse ROPO (Research Offline, Purchase Online). Poles value the opportunity to see a product live, try it on, talk to an advisor and buy immediately.

Eco? Yes, but at a reasonable price

Sustainability was ranked fifth among the most important criteria for store evaluation. Poland is the third market among the 7 surveyed, after the US and Spain, where sustainability made the top 5.

What’s more, while trust is now the most important factor in choosing a retailer, sustainability will play a key role in declarations about where to shop in the future. Respondents want to buy from stores that care about the environment – for 75% of them this means modernity and innovation.

On the other hand, the prices of eco-friendly products are perceived as high. In the “EY Future Consumer Index” survey of the first half of 2023, 84% of respondents claimed this. They also believe that high prices will reduce the sales volume and growth prospects of the green products market.

The challenge for companies, therefore, becomes how to combine sustainability with attractive prices. Innovation and cutting-edge solutions can help reduce the cost of producing eco products, which should help increase demand for them.

About the survey

EY-Parthenon’s “Retail Performance Ranking” is a cyclical, international study that evaluates retailers. Last June, Poland was included in it for the first time. At that time, more than 2,800 respondents from our country evaluated 65 retailers in surveys. The study, “What Shapes the Choices of Polish Consumers in 2023? Retail Performance Ranking 2023” can be downloaded here (in Polish).

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