Astound Commerce Finds Significant Gaps in Capabilities Between Specialty Retailers and Brands in New Report

The variety of retailer choices for shoppers grows every day, putting increased pressure on brands and retailers to stand out in the crowded market. Consumer habits and preferences continually evolve, and data shows that consumers are trending towards shopping and purchasing directly from brands and marketplaces like Amazon – a departure from the traditionally retailer-dominated landscape. This has forced specialty retailers to invest heavily in unique digital and in-store experiences to maintain their edge.

To take a closer look at how specialty retailers and brands are adapting to these new conditions, Astound Insights evaluated the desktop, mobile, and in-store experiences of 50 specialty retailers and 50 global brands in a new report, Specialty Stores Invest to Survive, released today. Astound Insights measured brand and specialty retailer experiences across 206 metrics and eight shopping scenarios, and visited Chicagoland physical stores when available, to identify how their offerings stack up in the heated retail landscape.

“In our most recent research, it’s clear that brands and retailers are in a race to differentiate their shopping experience across all channels in a way that both inspires and keeps customers coming back,” said Lauren Freedman, SVP of Digital Strategy and Chief Merchant of Astound Commerce. “Our research found that specialty retailers in general are providing more advanced technologies at every touchpoint to survive. Many have been in the game for a decade or more and have honed their selling skills, putting them in a powerful position.”

Specialty Retailers Take an Omnichannel Approach

Fast delivery, on-the-go shopping options and strong benefit programs are becoming increasingly more necessary to maintain a loyal customer base. Overall, specialty retailers are much more…

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