Shopping Reinvented: Empathy and the Key to a Superior Shopper Journey

December 2017

As modern life complicates the daily routine, consumers increasingly report the elevated importance of saving time. An enormous opportunity exists for companies to leverage the shopper journey as a method for addressing this consumer challenge. An empathy-infused approach strengthens engagement and differentiates beyond products.

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Always-on technology is the backdrop of modern life

The always-on, mobile nature of technology and the Great Recession have reshaped modern life. Consumers are looking for ways to make their lives easier and spend on endeavours that enhance their self-worth.

Consumers value their time and the experience

Consumers increasingly report the growing importance of time and experience versus possessions.

Consumers are willing to pay to save time

The increased importance of time (and its perceived scarcity in daily life) has supported a concomitant lift in the consumer desire to fund endeavours that preserve it.

The importance of empathy

Empathy underpins a successful shopper journey. It needs to be the key ingredient in either new or refurbished shopper journey designs.

Leveraging the shopper journey

Companies and brands should focus on the shopper journey as a way to meet the desire of consumers to gain control over modern life challenges.

Value beyond the product

The shopper journey will be a critical plank in consumers’ determination of the value of a company or brand. Consumers will continue to assign higher value to companies that seek to solve the problems associated with daily life.

Product discovery and transactional

In terms of the shopper journey, key contact points to target can be divided into two distinct categories: product discovery and transactional.

Innovative concepts are vital

In today’s hyper-competitive market, innovation is necessary just to keep pace with mainstream entities. The shopper journey offers a high payback opportunity to differentiate and ramp-up consumer engagement.


Megatrend analysis at Euromonitor International
Megatrend framework
Shopping Reinvented is one of our eight focus megatrends
Key findings
Opportunities and challenges

What is Driving the Trend?

Technology and the Great Recession reshape modern life…
…creating strain within global communities
As a reaction to modern life, consumers value time as a top priority
To ease daily pressures, consumers are on a quest for simplification
Time is the new status: the premiumisation of the hourglass
Empathy serves as the bedrock of a memorable engagement
The shopper journey presents the ideal platform for implementation
Contact points to leverage along the shopper journey

The Shopper Journey in Action

Product discovery: finding your way in a fragmented world
Papa John’s: satisfying the craving for pizza in time for kick-off
Instagram : take a picture, inspire tonight’s dinner choice
Magazine Luiza : Brazilian retailer relies on Tinder saleswoman
Grubhub : for those times when you want to be adventurous
AskAnna : French company provides advice in the dressing room
IBM: Watson Discovery takes searching to a whole other level
Transactional: checkout seen as loss of time regardless of channel
Xing Bian Li: Chinese convenience store reduces friction
Everseen : Irish company takes on Amazon in checkout-free tech
Transactional: relieving pain points go a long way
Domino’s: order anywhere, and any way you want
New Balance and Modcloth : one size does not fit all
Walmart versus Amazon: battle for the last mile
Delivery gets closer to home
Consumers want to make returns when, where it is convenient
Both companies are focused on instant returns gratification


From a promise to an empathetic, memorable experience
The next stage of evolution is set to further mitigate pain points
Key takeaways


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