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57% of shoppers say they want digital engagement in the aisle to improve purchasing decisions

Shelf-edge labels that work with mobile are becoming a key part of the store experience

UK shoppers are increasingly demanding more digital information at the shelf edge to improve in-store shopping experiences and help inform their buying decisions.

Original research of over 2,000 UK shoppers in shelve label vendor Pricer’s latest ‘Pricer UK Consumer Insight Report 2021’ finds that two thirds (65%) would be more likely to buy a product in-store when they can easily and clearly access information about the product digitally. 

In what it describes as ‘the information revolution at the shelf-edge’, almost six in ten (57%) consumers would like to have more access to product details in addition to pricing, whilst nearly half (49%) would like more digital signage at the shelf-edge to help inform their buying decisions.

The report goes on to suggest that this is particularly important for complex, high consideration or big ticket items, where shoppers want to be able to self-serve information about the product and its specifications digitally at the point of display. 

In fact, 61% said access to digital product information became increasingly important when shopping for expensive items, while 45% have been put off buying a complex or considered purchase when there wasn’t enough product information available.

Equally, as UK consumers opt to shop more sustainably, the research shows that since the start of the pandemic more than half (55%) now want to choose local produce in a bid to become more sustainable. Some 43% of shoppers are also willing to pay more for ‘green’ products, but only as long as their sustainable credentials are clearly visible as part of the product display. 

A further 57% also said they would like to see sourcing and ingredients information more readily available at the shelf-edge digitally.

However, there is a fine balance to be struck; as inconsistent information between on- and off-line channels and ‘information overload’ in the aisle can also put shoppers off.  Almost half (49%) expressed frustrations that product details at the shelf-edge were inconsistent with the information about the same product on a retailer’s website, and 37% said they had become so overwhelmed by excessive information at the shelf-edge that they abandoned the purchase altogether.

Duncan Potter, CMO at Pricer, explains: “While there is an increasingly growing thirst among shoppers to self-serve digitally in-store, which is prompting an information revolution at the shelf-edge, there is clearly a fine balance to be stuck.  While consumers want to be able to access online product details, look up specifications and reviews and compare pricing, they want this to be served up seamlessly in the aisle without ‘information overload’ kicking in.”

Potter adds: “With digital signage and the use of QR formats at the shelf-edge, retailers can optimise the customer’s self-service experience in the aisle, allowing them to get all the information they need to inform their buying decision, without over bombarding them.  Similarly, with real-time integration between the digital shelf and the retailer’s online offer, consistency of pricing, product spec and promotion can be consistently managed more dynamically to improve CX and drive conversions.”

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