Article | May 4, 2021
In recent years, the focus and surge in ecommerce has been undeniable. There has been clear evidence of how a lack of online consideration can ultimately result in a brand’s demise, with Debenhams and Topshop just two recent examples. However, the latest moves by online giants, including Amazon, are suggesting we’re not quite ready for a complete digital switchover just yet.
In this article, Nate Burke, CEO at Diginius, a proprietary software solutions provider for digital marketing and ecommerce, explains that multichannel models are the next logical step, and how businesses can boost their prospects with not just a presence in both the digital and physical space, but by combining the two to create a frictionless customer experience.
While it might have felt like the pandemic was driving us closer to some sort of digital utopia, particularly with the closure of non-essential shops, remote working and online social gatherings being the norm for over a year now, it has become apparent neither businesses nor consumers are quite ready for things to transform to such an extent just yet.
One clear piece of evidence is the buzz and excitement that surrounded the reopening of retail in England and Wales from 12 April. This date marks the first time this year non-essential stores allowed customers to enter, browse and purchase items in the traditional bricks and mortar way.
Stores and hospitality venues were met with queuing customers on day one of the eased restrictions, showing a clear desire for physical brand offerings. One brand in particular which is known for its strictly-bricks and mortar model is Primark. Despite months of plummeted sales, its stores across England and Wales were one of the most popular among consumers on the first day of reopening, with many even lining up outside before business hours.
Although the excitement may have simply been down to pent up frustration after having spent months indoors with few other recreational activities available, there is undeniably a certain sense of trust, convenience and comfort offered by the in-store experience, that digital channels are yet to trump.
However, when taking to high streets and re-entering shopping centres after so long, consumers are no doubt being met with an unrecognisable physical retail landscape, with a significant number of empty units, some of which once belonged to flagship stores and iconic brands.
A changing physical landscape
The pandemic was the tipping point for many brands that had been slow or reluctant to adapt to the gradual digital transformation that has been occurring for some years now, examples of which include Debenhams and businesses operating under the Arcadia Group. Essentially, while some of these brands were struggling against online competitors before the initial lockdown, forced store closures drove customers to shop with those that had perfected their digital experience as there was no physical alternative anymore. So with no other options, the enhanced experience and simpler processes of trusted online brands outweighed any incentives to remain loyal to those which favoured the in-store offering. Evidently, the two channels are not the same and a mere presence in both online and offline spaces is not enough.
But while consumers bid farewell to stores they have known and visited their whole life, we welcome new brands and ways of shopping to the high street, suggesting it’s not completely over for bricks and mortar just yet.
One of the latest additions is Amazon Fresh. The online giant has been taking up space in physical retail across the U.S. for some years now, with bookstores, Amazon Go and the acquisition of Whole Foods. While the latter helped Amazon break into the competitive grocery market in the UK too, its most recent Amazon Fresh store opening in Ealing, London, is on track to solidify its position.
The unique store concept of a till-less shopping experience aims to disrupt the grocery industry by removing frictions and enabling customers to get their goods in the most convenient way. The concept utilises hundreds of cameras, depth sensors and artificial intelligence to recognise and monitor items customers pick up and put back. Upon entry, they scan a barcode on their Amazon Shopping smartphone app, and upon leaving, their accounts are automatically charged with the items they walk out with.
Of course, Amazon certainly did not need to make this move into physical retail, especially considering their growing online financial performance. However, the business clearly understands the importance of a model that comprises both online and physical channels, particularly as consumers’ behaviours and sentiments adjust following the pandemic.
Digital-led bricks and mortar
While digital offerings have provided a lifeline for both businesses and consumers amid lockdown restrictions, there are still certain items that customers prefer to buy in-store, with groceries and clothing two of the biggest categories. Ultimately, in-store grocery shopping remains the most convenient way to get items you need instantly, and digital is yet to offer a way to help customers gauge fit, feel and quality of clothing items online. The only option is to place an order and return it if you are unsatisfied, which as Amazon is beginning to understand, comes at a great financial and environmental cost.
The brand’s physical stores offer a way to combat these issues until a digital solution is established. Not only do they offer a fast and seamless way to shop for essential grocery items, Amazon Fresh also features a station at which online orders can be picked up and returned, minimising the impact delivery to multiple addresses and round return trips have on its bottom line and the planet.
Going forward, this is precisely what the future of retail will look like. Rather than pulling all physical presence, technology and digital software needs to be integrated into in-store offerings in order to reduce pain points of either channel.
Many multichannel retailers offer similar click and collect services that help merge customer experiences across channels and create a seamless and convenient process. And while Amazon Fresh is a unique concept, we can see other brands making similar moves with the likes of Scan and Go services and self-checkouts.
By embracing and leveraging the technology available, brands can make the most of their multichannel models, whereby online and offline routes are not separate entities, but rather a way to boost business prospects through greater presence, frictionless processes and an overall better buying experience for the customer.
Article | December 22, 2020
Most influential organizations need international market research as it helps formulate growth strategies and decision-making processes. Market research translation allows businesses to understand clients’ expectations, conduct competitive analysis, make educated business decisions, and much more.
Surveying multilingual consumers is challenging in multiple ways, requires language expertise, and has zero room for errors. A single mistake, miscommunication, or misunderstandings can adversely impact a company’s progress in local and international markets. Many organizations hire business translation services firms for their expertise in the sector.
Here are some do’s and don’ts of translating market research to understand the complexity of the task.
1. Native Speakers
When translating surveys, questions, and instructions, working with native speakers allows questionnaires to sound more natural and helps respondents feel comfortable when answering. Additionally, having native translators who have or are living in your target research area will help them understand the respondents better. Your translators will understand the local language and colloquialisms as well as make the questionnaire easily accessible.
2. Background Information
Your market research translation services firm should have all the necessary background information to understand your research scope and objective, along with ensuring its accuracy. Your translators should know what kind of information you need from respondents to ask the correct questions in the target language. In addition, the linguists who translate the answers would also require a complete discussion to comprehend the precise meaning of the statements made.
3. Avoid Leading Questions
Ensure that your survey has minimal leading questions, if any. Such questions decrease the accuracy of your research by guiding respondents toward specific answers. Typically, leading questions might confuse your respondents. They might answer in a different way than they would in normal circumstances. This may alter your research results and give you an erroneous image of the local market, which can impact your company’s positioning adversely in the long term.
4. Review of Target Participants
Depending on your survey region, you may need to adapt your research methods to include real-time conversations, phone interviews, besides online questionnaires. You may need to create new classes of participants for your study due to population structure variations. If required, you can reorganize your target audience categories, their number, and how you contact them.
5. Test Study Methods
Your business translation services team should test the questionnaire on a sample before you go live to ensure that all your respondents understand the instructions and questions. This also helps you avoid vague messages and poorly translated, indistinct questions. Invest some extra billing hours in testing to ensure the accuracy of your research.
1. Not Going Beyond Word-to-Word Translation
Market research documentation involves surveys, questions, videos, interactive content, and more. Along with terminology and grammatical rules, translators require details, like the respondents' voice pitch, body language, and idiomatic expressions for successful translations for the project.
2. Overlook Cultural Aspects
Researchers cannot ask the required questions or conduct a qualitative analysis of the answers without cultural insight. They simplify communication between the respondents and the translator and enable you to represent the local market accurately. Integrating cultural nuances into the research helps you create an emotional connection with the respondents and results in more accurate answers for your analysis.
3. Ignore Data Security
Adhering to data security protocols builds trust among your local audience and reduces the risk of problems with local authorities. If your questionnaires have sensitive data, avoid any data security breaches. This builds trust among your local audience and reduces the risk of issues with the law. If you take assistance from a language service provider, they should ensure that your research results and the respondents’ data are protected. Usually, your translation agency will have strong data security measures to keep your files safe and secure.
4. Forgetting to Proofread
Translating market research involves concepts that cannot always be compared in all languages, brand perceptions that differ with the region, varying local social norms for communication, and several other aspects that influence the translation and localization process. Get survey results checked and proofread by the research team before sharing them with your management and stakeholders. This ensures that analysts use accurate data to make their predictions and removes any mistakes from the document.
5. Have Fixed Deadlines
Your market research results will determine your product launches, fresh marketing strategies, and development. Proper documentation for multilingual market research needs time and patience, as rushing through the entire process can be counterproductive. Rushed translations and skipping critical phases of research might result in the omission of essential data and altering the analysis results. This could lead to a false assurance that pushes you in the incorrect course.
Multilingual market research requires translating both the instructions and surveys that enable you to investigate local markets and local respondents' data.
Article | March 4, 2020
The rage of social media has led to the emergence of social networking. With that, the competition to engage the audience on online platforms and entice them has become fierce. Brands are adopting novel strategies to enhance customer experience and increase brand value. The advent of technology and a myriad of innovations has reinvented the marketing industry. Amongst many, artificial intelligence and augmented reality are an integral part of the digital marketing landscape. AI and its applications have not left any sector untouched, and its forms are far beyond mundane.
Article | August 17, 2020
For many in the B2B marketing world, original research provides an effective way to build thought leadership and drive content for owned and earned media. Unfortunately, many research reports from B2B companies are dry, uninspired and focus solely on pontifications from the brand point of view. Such unremarkable content isn’t helping customers, especially if they never see it due to information overload or they don’t trust it.