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If you thought you were frustrated about not being able to find good deals lately, it is perhaps a small comfort to know that retailers are frustrated, too. It’s what they do about it, that could make the difference between winning or losing you as a customer.

Vericast’s annual 2022 Retail TrendWatch report this year focuses on home retailers, service providers and their customers, as the high cost of travel is keeping many people home this summer. That’s prompting some 40% of consumers to embark on DIY projects, as they look to spiff things up without busting their budgets.

That’s easier said than done, however. Shoppers want more deals and discounts, but retailers say they’re having a hard time offering them.

44% of consumers say they’re concerned about rising prices, and 38% use coupons, discounts or deals to plan their home improvement shopping lists. And retailers are aware of this desire for deals. 81% of the retailers surveyed say they know their customers are looking for deals, but supply issues are hindering their promotional plans. They can’t offer compelling discounts if they can’t get popular items, can’t keep them in stock, or if it costs them more to acquire.

Nevertheless, about three-quarters of retailers want to give shoppers stronger reasons to purchase, saying that promotions are more important than ever.

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So it’s great that retailers recognize this. But what are they going to do about it? “People are willing to spend, but retailers need to give them a reason to splurge,” Vericast’s report warns.

Part of the problem, Vericast found, is that “retailers aren’t in tune to what’s most important to consumers.”

Consumers rank “fair prices” as the number-one attribute they consider in deciding where to shop, with “quality” a distant second. A parallel survey asking retailers what they think is most important to their customers, had those two attributes reversed – retailers think quality is more important to their customers than prices. Customers also rate “getting the best deal” higher than retailers think they do, while retailers think “convenience” is more important to their customers than it actually is.

That apparent disconnect extends to advertising and preferred promotional platforms as well. Shoppers say print is the best way to reach them, with more preferring paper coupons, discounts and deals when shopping. Online coupons and discounts comes in second. While the majority of retailers acknowledge that print is an important part of their promotional strategy, two-thirds say social media is also important – yet only 17% of shoppers said social media is a factor in determining how and where they shop.

“People are embracing a variety of purchasing and saving options, and retailers should take heed,” the report notes. “While it may be a surprise that paper still holds strong over digital deals, retailers should note it ultimately depends on lifestyles and preferences. Using digital and traditional marketing, from mobile to mailbox, is the best approach.”

So if you’re staying close to home this summer and plan to do some work around the house, here’s hoping home-improvement retailers can find a way to offer some deals, in a method you prefer to receive them. And if you opt for DIY over hiring a professional, you might end up with some extra spending money. With the prices of everything else the way they are lately – you may need it.

Image source: Home Depot

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