Key Retailer Takeaways from Recent ForgeRock Research, Part 2

Owing to research studies initiated by ForgeRock, we’ve gained telling insights into consumer mindsets regarding personal data and digital identity. We began exploring the lessons these gleanings offer retailers in Part 1 of this pair of posts; let’s now examine some further retailer takeaways.

They’re sorry they’ve shared

You might not be surprised to know that many consumers have concerns about the amount of data they have shared online;  53% of them, to be more precise. At least two in five would prefer to share less personal data with online entities, and those they’d most prefer to share less data with are social media platforms (64%), travel apps (64%), dating apps (63%) and, more to our point, online retailers (62%).  

Consumers want to have greater control over their personal data. Click through for more ForgeRock research.

Tellingly, 15%-33% of consumers would prefer to share less data with companies even if it impacted the services they’re offered. This, as the ComRes study we initiated notes,  “is a clear indication that consumers do not see themselves as the main beneficiary of online data-sharing.” 41% felt their data mainly or exclusively benefited the organization capturing it, against just 17% seeing themselves as being the main beneficiaries.

The Retailer Takeaway? It’s important to assume many of your customers or prospects are intrinsically uncomfortable with sharing personal data.  By clearly explaining the benefits they will see from sharing that data, then authentically delivering on those promises, a retailer can overcome this consumer reluctance.

Control builds consumer confidence

We’d mentioned, in that previous post, the remarkable amount of trust consumers express about Amazon managing their personal data. One contributing factor?  The fact Americans, in particular, are more likely to feel in control of information shared with Amazon (67%), more so than even with banks and credit card companies (60%).

Exercising control over the personal data held by online enterprises is an overriding concern for consumers, with nearly nine in ten (86%) desiring the ability to proactively manage their personal information.  

By another overwhelming margin, they demand transparency about automatic data collection; when it comes to connected devices, for instance, 92% desire notification whenever a device is capturing their data. For retailers considering IoT initiatives, this is a concern they’ll need to assuage.

The Retailer Takeaway? Allowing consumers to have greater control over their personal data will satisfy their increasing insistence on being able to access and manage it. The high regard Amazon is held in by consumers owes, in some part, to its openness and seeming willingness to lend that control to shoppers – a strategy which deepens the bond between consumer and retailer.