Wednesday, 22 December 2010

UK consumers left confused by new TV technology

ANT recently conducted a mystery shopper exercise in 10 of the UK’s leading high street retailers to see how consumers are advised on TV purchasing. The results of the experiment were announced today.

The study brought to light the problems shoppers face when looking to buy a new TV. For example, only half the stores were aware that their shops sold connected televisions, meaning that customers could be missing out on new TV technology because shop representatives haven’t received sufficient product training. Not only this but a third of shops visited, despite actively promoting bargain deals on TVs, had no staff members available to advise customers on the benefits of the different types of TV technologies.

Freeview HD has been heavily promoted this year but when asked whether an HD television with built-in Freeview would deliver Freeview HD, not one member of staff identified that in order to take advantage of this the viewer must live in a HD-enabled area.

It’s an exciting time for TV with technology constantly evolving, but inaccurate advice from shop staff is fuelling consumer confusion. Retailers need to understand the type of features that are important to customers, and must train staff in order to support customers when they turn to them for advice.

About the mystery shopper experiment:
ANT conducted a mystery shopper experiment, visiting 10 of the UK’s leading high street retailers: Argos, Comet, Dixons, Curry’s, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, John Lewis, Selfridges, PC World and Richer Sounds. The experiment was conducted in December 2010. The same experiment may yield different results if repeated at a different time.

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