Post-pandemic shoppers prefer face-to-face over robots, says Currys

There is a new kind of post-pandemic shopper demanding help from face-to-face experts and rejecting “robot retailers” when it comes to technology items, according to research from Currys.

The technology retailer revealed that in 2021, 58 per cent of people shopping for expensive and unfamiliar tech products would like to speak to a real-life human expert before they buy, whether that be in-store or online.

The research also showed that a further 57 per cent of shoppers that get human help are more satisfied with their purchase than those who don’t, and they state that interactions with humans lead to them making the right choice first time.

Computing tech is the category with the highest need of expertise, where 60 per cent of people said they wouldn’t make a purchase without expert advice.

Currys added that return rates are higher when consumers don’t speak to an expert beforehand, with 64 per cent of people saying they’d be happy with the right product and less likely to return their purchase if they got the advice with real human expert help.

Internal data from the business also shows that 61 per cent of shoppers believe it is important to see a product in real-life before buying, where consumers can have conversations with experts in a unique environment where they can see, touch and play with the tech they are thinking about buying.

“Technology is such an intrinsic part of our lives now,” said Ed Connolly, chief commercial officer, Currys. “More than ever before, prior to handing over their hard-earned cash, people want advice about the tech they buy from a real-life human expert, particularly when it comes to expensive and more complex kit.”

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