Survey finds big ‘expertise gap’ among retail sales associates

Salt Lake City -- Consumers value salesperson expertise above all else, but they often find such expertise lacking, according to eXperticity’s first-ever Retail Buying Experience survey. The study found a striking expertise gap among sales associates in five retail areas: outdoor, sporting goods, hunting or fishing, health and nutrition, and prestige beauty.

 When asked to rate which services consumers most desire and value from retail sales associates, the top four were:

1. Product knowledge (73%);
2. Help selecting the correct product (71%);
3. Category knowledge (69%); and
4. Help finding alternatives when the first choice is not available (68%).

The Retail Buying Experience survey shows that consumers still fundamentally want helpful expertise from retail sales associates to guide buying decisions while many of today’s retailers have opted for low-cost employees, forcing buyers to turn elsewhere for information,” said Tom Stockham, CEO of eXperticity. “This research clearly shows that consumers are not happy having to do all the research themselves and crave retail to play a hands-on role with their buying decisions.”

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