Stores that want their shoppers to keep coming back
must improve their online and in-store services now
or risk losing customer loyalty, perhaps forever. A new
study by Wharton’s Jay H. Baker Retailing Center and
WisePlum reveals that consumers are increasingly
dissatis􀁿ed with retail, especially during the COVID-
19 pandemic. Sparse inventory, sticky web navigation,
poor customer service, unrewarding loyalty programs
and cumbersome return policies are all contributing to
the rising tide of displeasure. The survey-based study,
“The New Reality: Understanding the Retail Consumer
Experience During a Pandemic,” finnds overall loyalty
has decreased as online shopping has increased, and
more customers are reporting problems when they
shop. Even though retailers are scrambling to adjust,
customers are less forgiving than ever.

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