Major Retail Study: Mobile Consumers Prefer NFC Technology over Competing Alternatives

  • Date: February 12, 2015
  • NFC Key to Better In-store Experiences, Increased Sales, and Enhanced Consumer Loyalty

    WAKEFIELD, Mass. – Feb. 12, 2015 – The NFC Forum and Strategy Analytics today unveiled the results of a comprehensive retail research report and web survey on mobile consumer engagement and purchases, revealing the needs and preferences of today’s mobile-centric consumer. The in-depth report – which includes both observational research of retail scenarios comprising 36 participants and a web survey that included more than 1,000 participants – offers retailers insights into providing more relevant, convenient and enhanced in-store shopping experiences and a better understanding of the full potential of in-store engagement opportunities. Overwhelmingly, NFC technology was preferred over competing alternatives including Bluetooth Beacons and QR codes.

    The Forum’s related white paper, “NFC Technology: How Changing Consumer Preferences Create New Opportunities for Retailers,” is available at the Forum’s website. The findings were also discussed earlier today during the Forum’s webinar, “Consumer Perspectives on In-Store Engagement Technology,” which is archived and available for replay.

    As mobile technology continues to allow retailers and brands to enhance communication and engagement with increasingly connected mobile consumers, the NFC Forum recently commissioned leading global consumer research firm Strategy Analytics to gather and analyze data relating to end-user preferences and perceptions of NFC in a retail setting.

    The study revealed six specific opportunities in which retailers and brands can use NFC technology during the customer journey to improve in-store experiences, generate more sales, and enhance customer loyalty and trust. Consumers were particularly excited to use NFC to access timely and relevant information, such as:

    • Store deals, store Wi-Fi, and rewards accounts
    • Multimedia content and real-time store inventory
    • Information about related products
    • A digital, NFC-enabled shopping cart on their phones
    • Product information for large purchases
    • Exact refill cartridge information and one-touch reorder capability

    NFC was preferred by a significant margin over QR codes, Bluetooth Beacons, and browsers in all of these use cases.

    The study also revealed that:

    • Over 75% of respondents who used NFC were very satisfied with their experience.
    • More than 75% of respondents indicated an interest in viewing additional product information including inventory and availability via NFC.
    • Over 60% were interested in an NFC-enabled mobile shopping cart in-store experience and using NFC to order the replacement parts or accessories for products, such as ink and toner cartridges for printers.

    “Smart phones continue to change the way we live, interact – and shop,” said Paula Hunter, Executive Director, NFC Forum. “For decades, retailers have been working to leverage technology to improve customer experiences and engagement under the ever-evolving digital model – all with varying degrees of success.”

    “Thanks to this survey data we have a much deeper understanding of how retail consumers want to be engaged. Overwhelmingly, NFC is preferred because it’s fast, efficient, and offers greater control,” continued Hunter. “With more than 500 million NFC-enabled phones in the market today and more than a billion by the end of this year, retailers would be wise to take advantage of NFC’s superior performance to immediately improve consumer engagement in many other aspects of the retail experience.”

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    About Near Field Communication Technology

    NFC technology makes life easier and more convenient for consumers around the world by making it simpler to make transactions, exchange digital content, and connect electronic devices with a touch. A standards-based connectivity technology, NFC harmonizes today’s diverse contactless technologies, enabling current and future solutions in areas such as access control, consumer electronics, health care, information collection and exchange, loyalty and coupons, payments, and transport. NFC technology is supported by the world’s leading communication device manufacturers, semiconductor producers, network operators, IT and services companies, and financial services organizations. NFC is compatible with hundreds of millions of contactless cards and readers already deployed worldwide.

    About the NFC Forum

    The NFC Forum (www.nfc-forum.org) was launched as a non-profit industry association in 2004 by leading mobile communications, semiconductor, and consumer electronics companies. The Forum’s mission is to advance the use of Near Field Communication technology by developing specifications, ensuring interoperability among devices and services, and educating the market about NFC technology. The Forum’s global member companies are currently developing specifications for a modular NFC device architecture, and protocols for interoperable data exchange and device-independent service delivery, device discovery, and device capability. The NFC Forum’s Sponsor members, which hold seats on the Board of Directors, include leading players in key industries around the world. The Sponsor members are: Broadcom Corporation, Dai Nippon Printing Co. Ltd., Google, Inc., Intel, MasterCard Worldwide, NEC, Nokia, NXP Semiconductors, Qualcomm, Samsung, Sony Corporation, STMicroelectronics, and Visa Inc.

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    Media Contact:

    Ruth Cassidy

    NFC Forum Public Relations

    ruth.cassidy@nfc-forum.org

    +1 617.957.8494