One of the hottest issues in CPG and eCommerce today is gaining and maintaining market share in a rapidly changing economic climate. As organizations prepare for a new and competitive landscape, creating a strategic and efficient approach is a top priority. Understanding industry trends and impending shifts can inform eCommerce and omnichannel strategies that will boost conversion rates and optimize workflows.
In a recent webinar hosted by BWG Strategy, Gautam Kanumuru, Yogi CEO & Co-Founder, and Haithem Elembaby, Yogi Head of Insights Partnerships discuss the latest trends and forecasts for the CPG industry based on real-time Customer Sentiment data straight from Yogi’s Product Sentiment platform.
Here are some of the biggest takeaways from the discussion.
The paradigm around shopping has changed.
Shopping and consumer decision-making has fundamentally changed over the past few years.
Previously, the way consumers selected products was fairly qualitative. Influential factors included advertisements, recognizable brand names, packaging, and in-store availability.
Fast forward to 2023, there has been a complete paradigm shift. Today, shoppers have limitless data at their fingertips. With a simple Google search for a product, shoppers have access to endless information on a full range of competitive options. Including hundreds (sometimes thousands) of in-depth reviews from real users.
Furthermore, since any given product can now be shipped to a shopper’s doorstep within a few days, consumer decision-making is no longer an issue of what’s available at a local retailer. Now, customer decision-making is based on whether products truly meet their needs and expectations.
As a result, brand names are now carrying less weight to consumers. What’s more, flashy marketing campaigns don’t have the same impact that they used to. Ultimately, products must now speak for themselves.
This means that brands need to focus on building great products that truly meet customers’ needs and expectations. In order to do this, consumers must be at the center of the decision-making process.
Forward-looking brands are learning that these widespread changes have created room for lots of opportunity. Yogi has seen brands of all sizes make simple changes based on customer data that have resulted in exponential ROI.
Measuring Customer Sentiment and Voice-of-Customer enables brands to understand customers in real-time and quickly inform short and long-term initiatives based on the preferences of consumers. The resulting process is a cyclical pattern. Listening to customers helps build better products, which leads to increased sales – and the cycle continues over time.
eCommerce & omnichannel focused brands must adopt a customer-centric approach.
The new shopping landscape is largely digital. The modern omnichannel shopping experience involves a variety of consumer touch points made up of written and visual content such as PDPs, advertisements, and customer reviews.
Consumers have quickly learned how to use this information to their advantage. The result is a smarter shopper, who is more empowered in their decision-making process.
Now, there is a low barrier to entry for shoppers wanting to make data-driven decisions.
Modern customers know what they want as well as the various options available to them, and how to get information to make an educated decision.
What does this mean for brands? Brands who want to stay competitive must constantly keep their ear on the pulse of what shoppers want and need, a term known as Voice-of-Customer. Understanding Voice-of-Customer enables brands and manufacturers to create the products that customers will purchase and promote.
The modern, savvy shopper makes data-driven decisions to find the products that truly work for them. So, in order to win on the check-out screen, brands must prioritize creating products specifically for their shoppers.
Savvy shoppers are heavily swayed by the most recent reviews.
Economic conditions are having a significant impact on the outlook and behavior of shoppers. However, the resulting behavior changes aren’t as black and white as one might expect.
Now more than ever, consumers are paying attention to the most recent feedback that products are receiving. Where a quick glance at a 4.5-star rating may have sufficed months ago, consumers are now sorting for the most recent product reviews and taking their content into heavy consideration.
In fact, reviews are read by anywhere from 80-90% of shoppers. What’s more, the most common option selected for sorting reviews is “most recent”.
This means, in a pool of five-star reviews, a streak of low ratings and reviews brought on by a bad batch of products or a changed formula can have a significant impact on bottom-line conversation rates.
The good news is that well-equipped brands are able to act fast. Having the agility to make quick changes, for example quickly updating a PDP to correct mismatched customer expectations, is key for continued eCommerce success.
The challenge for brands is to shift from planning on a quarterly and monthly cadence to the now necessary weekly and even daily evaluation for change to meet shopper expectations. Constant changes in Customer Sentiment require brands to act fast and maintain agility over time, and the organizations prioritizing this are quickly rising to the top.
Want to hear more predictions and get an analysis of Customer Sentiment around Price & Value for the top ten CPG product categories?
Over the past few years, the CPG industry has vastly changed. eCommerce has quickly risen to the forefront of the shopping experience, and unstable economic conditions have caused the landscape to become more competitive than ever before.
At a glance, here’s what brands should know:
-Shoppers are now empowered to make data-driven decisions and have access to a full range of competitive options.
-Under more scrutiny than ever, products must speak for themselves. Acting on customer feedback must be prioritized, flashy marketing campaigns alone are no longer converting.
-Customer Sentiment & Voice-of-Customer analytics are at the heart of a customer-centric eCommerce and omnichannel approach.
-Consumers value recency and specific feedback over star ratings, which can quickly impact conversion rates.
-Brands need to speed up their action and reaction processes. Agility among teams is a defining quality.
Leadership at Yogi offered a lot of valuable information during the webinar for CPG organizations interested in adopting a customer-centric approach. To hear more predictions and see examples of real brands including Tylenol, Nestle, and Church & Dwight, watch the full webinar here.