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The new Google study reveals insight on the digital impact on in-store shopping. We all know that the growth of smartphones and access to online information has changed the way we shop in stores, but how is this actually affecting brick and mortar retail?
Today's consumers are more informed than ever before. They want information throughout the shopping process, driving their use of smartphones and consumption of online information for shopping. Customers look for information at all times: before, during and after store visits, using a variety of online sources while constantly turning to their smartphones to fill the information gap.
Mobile users constitute the most valuable customer segment because they are the most likely to convert. With mobile searching constantly on the rise, it is important to focus on this user segment and deliver what they need an want.
Online activity affects offline behavior, especially in regard to smartphones.
"In retail, you can't think about mobile phones as a threat, you have to think of them as a magnet that drives people into your stores" - Bridget Dolan.
Combining search with technologies including app-option code allow your dealership to drive downloads while creating a direct connection between your dealership and the consumer in the process. Providing the right information at the right time is essential to gaining business from customers both pre and post purchase and using tools including beacons allow you to interact with customers at precise moments of decision.
Consumers look at competitors sites but a greater percentage look at search engine results and retailer sites and apps. The majority of customers now already know what they want before they enter the store, yet 2/3 of people surveyed said they couldn't find the details they needed while at the store. The key is to give them all the online information they need at their fingertips via your site, app and search campaigns to enable them to make a decision and buy in your store.
Consumers still visit stores for more than just transactions, but they now expect more.
With auto shoppers only visiting 1.2 dealerships per purchase cycle the necessity for you to get them in YOUR showroom is essential to selling cars. One great way to drive customers back to your dealership is to offer shoppers personalized recommendations and offers.
Though shopping habits have changed drastically, retailers haven't necessarily caught up in the ways they measure their marketing efforts and allocate their media spend. Most retailers don't yet understand the extent to which digital drives in-store transactions and how in-store visits affect online purchases. The result is that they're often viewing sales in silos and undervaluing the real impact of their digital spend on total sales. Consequently, they're making suboptimal decisions about their media mix.
The bridge between digital traffic and foot traffic has become a competitive necessity in retail. The retailers who embrace these new realities—who connect with their customers seamlessly, no matter where those shoppers happen to be or how they want to buy—will be the retailers who win. It's those on-the-go connections that are the future of shopping.