‘Information overload’ harming sales, consumers; AI can simplify things – Chain Store Age

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More than half (51%) of the consumers in the Accenture study are already open to using conversational AI solutions.


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Consumers are  walking away purchases because they feel overwhelmed by so many choices and messages.

That’s one of the biggest takeaways from Accenture’s “The Empowered Consumer” study, which found that  the issue of “information overload” is harming sales and customer relationships, with 74% consumers walking away from purchases because they feel overwhelmed.

Retailers and brands have inadvertently created a cacophony of choice that could result in lost revenue, according to the report. The endless number of choices, messages, ads and claims consumers now face, coupled with recommendations from friends, family, influencers, algorithms and apps is only adding to the noise.

“Information overload is impacting people’s confidence in their purchase decisions across the board, from small things like moisturizer to big-ticket items like washing machines, the report stated. 

 Among the key findings:

•More than seven-in-10 (73%) consumers surveyed feel overwhelmed by the volume of available options.

•Nearly as many (72%) of consumers say they’re confused by the different terminology or metrics used to explain features or benefits when making a purchase decision.

•Seventy-six percent of consumers say they struggle to know whether a product with deliver on its promises.

•Four in ten (41%) of consumers say it takes more time and effort to make a purchase decision than it did three years ago.

 •Seventy-five percent of consumers feel bombarded by advertising.

•Seventy-five percent of consumers wish they could identify options that meet their needs quickly and easily.


The findings underscore an urgent need for retailers and consumer goods brands to reduce the “noise” around decision-making to boost sales and increase customer loyalty, according to Accenture. The report said that generative AI can help by delivering hyper-personalized experiences that allow companies to cut through the noise and simplify decision-making, increasing customer loyalty in the process.  

“Consumers are ready, the report stated. “Based on our research, we believe that consumers are on track to adopt generative AI-powered advisors at scale over the next two years, as they increasingly seek to lighten their workloads associated with making purchases. “

More than half (51%) of the consumers in the Accenture study are already open to using conversational AI solutions. And 55% are open to using Gen AI agents to make purchases for them.

“Ultimately, we expect this shift to trigger the largest reconsideration in decades of what and how consumers buy,” the report said. “The question is how consumer-facing companies can best harness technology to be where people are when making decisions, and to make the experience easier. Those who empower consumers with easier decisions will earn deeper loyalty, leaving competitors behind.”

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