Keeping Up With the Modern Day Customer

The modern day customer is a study that all businesses should take a keen interest in learning about; however let’s take a brief look back at history and the early days of when shopping first came about.

The Ancient era brought the first records of shopping in Ancient Greece (800 BC). The agora, a central spot in Greece city-states, functioned as a marketplace where traders kept stalls or shops to sell their goods.

In Ancient Rome (600 BC – 400 AD) a similar marketplace known as the forum was strictly reserved for the vending of goods.  Romans were known for using shopping lists, as one written for a soldier was uncovered near Hadrian’s Wall and was dated back to 75-125 CE.

These were the first known instances of shopping, since then department stores and shopping centres have laid foundations to the way consumers ‘physically purchase goods.

Online shopping was invented in 1979 by an English entrepreneur Michael Aldrich. Videotex “connected a modified domestic TV to a real time transaction processing computer via a domestic telephone line.” Aldrich launched Redifon’s Office Revolution in March 1980, which connected consumers, customers, agents, distributors, suppliers and service companies to the corporate systems online, which enabled real-time business transactions to be completed electronically.

Shopping both online and physically have grown and adapted to changes in environments and consumer habits. However both are not without their issues.

In a store, a shopper has decided after selecting several products they are just going to leave, abandoning their trolley in the middle of the store! Outrageous?

The modern customer believes this is acceptable online

Baymard calculate an average of cart abandonments based on 33 different studies including Forrester, IBM and MarketingSherpa. The current average for 2016 is 68.63%, that’s almost 7 out of 10 shoppers abandoning their trolley!

The 6 most common reasons for a customer to abandon their virtual cart are:

  • Unexpected delivery costs
  • Researching products and service
  • Having to create an account
  • Payment security concerns
  • Confusing checkout
  • Couldn’t find a coupon / voucher code

Modern customers are notorious for having fast paced lifestyles, any moment the consumer has spare, they will be online browsing for what they currently require, from a new toaster to a pair of jeans, birthday cards to pet supplies etc.

The modern customer expects quality service at their convenience.

Consumers want to be able to shop around the clock. Awake at 3 o’clock in the morning? No problem, your online shop can be browsed at the customer’s convenience. Another trait is they will not give a second chance; if another company can do it better, faster and with the least amount of effort involved, they will use your competitor. The modern day consumer is not loyal and will flit from good to even better.

How can businesses keep up?

Your organisation may become a little dizzy trying to keep up with hundreds of fast paced individuals on the website at once. Live chat services simplify conversing, monitoring and engaging with online visitors.


Live chat services can be implemented to your business website quickly and easily with a small piece of HTML script. Once added, the chat button will be displayed on the website, if your company decides not operate the chat 24/7, website visitors will be able to leave a message when the chat is offline. The modern day customer can instantly contact your company at their convenience.


Wouldn’t it be great if your business could see exactly where visitors are abandoning your website? Some live chat services include tracking that shows the behaviour of the visitor from the moment they enter your website to the moment they leave.

Tracking the modern day customer will help your business pinpoint exactly the exit page, your company can analyse the webpage to see where improvements need to be made.


Your business can invite the visitor to chat by using proactive invitations. Using the information collected from monitoring visitors on the website, the invitation can be timed so that it catches them before they bail.

A proactive invitation makes the modern day customer rethink before leaving the website, as they are made aware that they can speak with a representative from your business to ease their hesitations and have their questions answered.


The modern day customer is extremely busy, ensure your business can keep up with how they behave on your website, and can answer enquiries instantly preventing potential customers from leaving your business for a competitor, all with the use of a simple solution called live chat.

No Trolley should be abandoned!

If you have any opinions on how to impress the modern day customer leave your comments below or contact the author directly.

Author Bio: Gemma Baker is the Marketing Executive for UK live chat services provider, Click4Assistance, with a range of digital knowledge within PPC advertising, SEO practices, email campaigns and social media.


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