Consumerscope: Specialty Retail: The Key is Closing the Sale
Throughout the holiday season, all eyes were on retail. The industry ancxiously waited to see if consumer electronics be popular gifts this holiday season and, If so, what were the hot items. CEA's 16th Annual CE Holiday Purchase Patterns study revealed that four out of five adults plan to purchase CE products during the holiday and planned to spend an average of $222 on consumer electronics, marking an eight-percent gain over last year.
It's now time to look forward and see what direction the CE retail market is taking as a whole. Online, big-box retailers and mass-merchant stores are the most popular places consumers shop for electronics. But we shouldn't forget the role of specialty CE retailers. CEA's "The Changing CE Retail Environment: How Do Specialty Retailers Stay Relevant?" explores where and how consumers shop for A/V gear, as well as the drivers and deterrents of shopping at specialty retail. According to the report, annual mean spending for A/V is $1,862, with median spending coming in at $500.
It is not surprising that consumer awareness of specialty, high-end electronics retailers is relatively low, with only one-third (36 percent) of consumers aware of a specialty retailer in their area. Despite the lower awareness, consumers have a sense of what characterizes specialty retailers. Leading the list of store characteristics includes: knowledgeable sales staff, as well as installation and consulting services. Fewer consumers, however, feel a smaller store size (i.e., boutique) characterizes specialty retailers, suggesting that product selection is paramount to consumers when shopping for A/V consumer electronics.