Around 57% of consumers believe they are more digitally advanced than some retailers

Around 57% of consumers believe they are more digitally advanced than some retailers

Brand loyalty is tumbling as consumers prioritise speed, innovation and convenience when they shop, a new study has found.

Around 57% of consumers believe they are more digitally advanced than some retailers and commerce services, according to research from global e-commerce consultancy Salmon.

The research, which surveyed over 6,000 international consumers in the UK, the US and Benelux, also found that 60% of consumers would be more likely to shop with a certain retailer if it was more digitally innovative.

Speed and convenience is also playing into a wider shift in consumer shopping behaviour, with almost nine in ten (88%) consumers believing speed of delivery is more important than the brand (78%). Around 60% feel online retailers should offer same-day delivery, compared to the average expected delivery time of 2.6 days in last year's research. This is likely fuelled by services such as Amazon Prime.

Furthermore, the survey found that almost a quarter (23%) of consumers are "digitally obsessed" and make almost all their purchases online – again prioritising convenience and innovation over brands.

There is also an increase in the use of new and innovative ways to shop, with 45% currently using or likely to use digital assistants such as Amazon Echo, Alexa or Google Home over the next 12 months. And 57% say they can see the personal benefit of Programmatic Commerce – allowing technology to automatically purchase goods for them based on their set of product preferences – compared to 53% the year before.

Salmon, however, believes retailers are failing to provide the elevated digital and innovative experiences that customers want. Almost seven in ten (69%) say they want to see greater innovation to improve the customer experience, showing a desire to shop with only the most forward-thinking stores.

"Loyalty is a complex thing. Across all sectors, we're seeing fewer people favouring and remaining strongly aligned to certain brands and companies," says Hugh Fletcher, global head of consultancy and innovation at Salmon. "This is especially prevalent in digital commerce – where the consumer focus on finding the lowest prices and fastest delivery doesn't lend itself to being loyal to a certain product."

The study does, however, show loyalty is still there to be captured – a key ground for any retailer wanting to be a leader in digital commerce and not be left behind.

"What this means is that retailers need to offer consumers a host of convenient services and harness innovative technologies in the process if they are going to attract and retain customers' attention," Fletcher explains. "As consumers are becoming more open to trying new technologies – or expect to in the coming months – retailers need to put in the ground work from now if they are to meet high expectations."