What Women Want Retailers To Know About Their Shopping Baskets

A woman's shopping cart carries more than goods; it carries stories about her and the many influencers in her life. If retailers better understood that journey, they could ensure the correct products are there for her and prolong the tale.

It can take gumshoe-like skills to discern just how the items in that cart fit into the woman's life narrative. Her shopping cart is not merely a receptacle of goods; it is a reflection of who she is and of the many people in her life. Her choices tell tales not only of her day, but also of the days of her children, friends, extended family and work associates.

And while she is often happy with her cart's contents, sometimes she does not feel good about them. And this, in particular, is where many women wish the retailers they shopped with most regularly knew them better.

Following are six common factors about a woman's shopping cart that she wishes retailers knew about her, and what retailers can do to improve the story.

A loyalist's basket is half-full: A supermarket's most loyal customer typically spends only 50 percent to 70 percent of her monthly budget with that merchant, according to Precima, a global retail strategy and analytics company. Loyalty programs are essential to understanding shopper behavior in ways that can increase the basket size, and social media can assist in keeping in touch. Tesco, for example, has invested resources in its Twitter account to communicate with existing customers while also getting a cleaner read on customer needs and product requests. The one-to-one communications put a face on the company and strengthen shopper relations.

It has abandonment issues: The average shopping cart abandonment rate is 68.6 percent, according to an analysis by Baymard Institute. Among the leading reasons: Unexpected costs. Occasional reminders to shoppers can help increase...

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