Today in retail, a new study shows consumers are taking their digital habits to physical stores, while the housing trend has retail on edge. Plus, subscription models increase their focus on loyalty, the mobile grocery adoption rate increases by 15% in March, Champs Sports is getting into the experiential retail game, and the National Retail Federation (NRF) wants Mastercard and Visa to postpone planned credit card swipe fee increases.
The 2022 Global Digital Shopping Playbook U.S. Edition, a PYMNTS and Cybersource collaboration found U.S. consumers four times as likely as those in other regions to use online ordering and curbside pickup. In short, 5.5 million U.S. consumers “sometimes, often or always buy extra items when they pick up online orders in brick-and-mortar stores” compared to 25% of U.K. shoppers and 27% of Brazilian shoppers by comparison, giving merchants an opportunity for added revenue.
In economic circles, this is housing data week, as we prepare to ingest the latest data on building permits and housing. Existing home sales are expected to show a 4% decline last month to a level not seen since February 2020. Whether it’s the actual construction of properties, the shift to make greater use of outdoor space, the remodeling of kitchens, baths and home offices or the subsequent furnishing that goes along with all of that, the slowdown is already sending shocks through the housing ecosystem.
Inflation is hovering around 8%, and the average consumer now subscribes to five different services. Rising acquisition costs are forcing more companies to rethink their customer retention strategies, and many are finding that recurring merchandising models like subscriptions are an effective way to offset costs while increasing customer engagement and lifetime value.
The portion of consumers using mobile channels to purchase groceries may be small, but it is quickly growing. From February to March, the share grew 15%, according to research from the April edition of PYMNTS’ monthly Digital Economy Payments report. The study found that the share of shoppers using mobile devices to purchase groceries rose from 4.8% in February to 5.5% in March.
At a time when many retailers are going small and digital with their physical stores, Foot Locker’s Champs Sports chain is rolling out a “store of the future” concept that bucks that trend via the opening of its largest, most hands-on location yet. The new 35,000-square-foot Homefield location in southern Florida that is set to open next weekend will include an indoor multi-sport court, a smoothie bar, flat screen TVs in the store’s aisles and a wellness shopping section that will allow customers to play and shop at the same time.
The NRF has joined bipartisan U.S. lawmakers in calling for Mastercard and Visa to hold off on their planned credit card swipe fee increases, which are scheduled to go into effect later this month. Sens. Roger Marshall of Kansas and Richard J. Durbin of Illinois, and Reps. Beth Van Duyne of Texas and Peter Welch of Vermont asked for another delay in implementing the higher fees — estimated to total $1.2 billion — after they were originally scheduled to take effect in April 2021.