Brand loyalty for Retailers in the digital age

Discover trust across the full retail landscape

TRUST AND TECHNOLOGY

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The retail Research

What role does trust play in the relationship between consumers and retailers, and how is this being affected by digital transformation?

Reply has conducted a comprehensive research program representing circa 31m people in the UK to understand the impact of trust on brand loyalty in this digital age.

Reply has unearthed some startling conclusions that challenge conventional wisdom in regard to trust, and discovered that technology can be used to catapult a retailer into the hearts of the nation.

Findings include the observations on the relationship between trust and quality, price, ethics, values, technology and personal data.

There are clear opportunities for new technologies that can further enhance and streamline the purchase process, although uptake may be slow at first.

The research was led by Retail Reply, Open Reply and Portaltech Reply.

Key Themes and Findings

  • Everyone is online
  • More than one path to trust
  • Shoppers don’t care for execution more than brand values
  • Shoppers don’t understand their own personal data
  • Shoppers want it all
  • Clear pricing supports trust
  • Early adopters are ready

Read the Press Release

MYTHS TO DEBUNK

The research conducted by Reply has revealed that there are several myths concerning trust and retail that need to be debunked.


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    "PEOPLE TRUST BRANDS FOR THEIR ETHICAL VALUES"

    In a world where environmental and ethical issues are a key concern, retailers are trying harder than ever to demonstrate their social responsibility.


    We were surprised by how far down the list ethics comes for consumers, as a defining factor of trust…

  • "OFFERING LOWER PRICES INCREASES TRUST"

    Giving good value for money can create trust, but it’s not as simple as just reducing prices.


    We saw that too-low prices and heavy discounting can actually undermine trust, and that transparency of pricing is necessary for the value equation to make sense…

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    "BAD CUSTOMER EXPERIENCES DAMAGE TRUST"

    We saw that while trust can be hard to earn and easy to lose, it’s not so unforgiving that one experience of poor service permanently damages the relationship.


    In fact, consumers will usually give you one chance to make amends…

  • "DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION: CONSUMERS ARE NOT READY TO TRUST AUTOMATED RETAIL"

    While Minority Report-style automated retail technology is almost within reach, we hypothesised that consumers would still be resistant to features like facial recognition, RFID packaging and automated check-out and payments.


    However, we saw that tech which a few years ago would have seemed like science fiction, is becoming rapidly less intimidating…

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    "CONSUMERS TRUST SMALL BUSINESSES MORE EASILY THAN LARGE ORGANISATIONS"

    This is often true when meeting face-to-face with staff who are informed, engaged and empowered – as typified by local traders or specialist shops.


    But where staff have less agency or autonomy, or where staff are invisible (e.g. online), consumers have to put their faith in the systems and practices of the organisation, and size and reputation become more influential...