Visits to stores by consumers are increasingly sporadic, to the point that the number of mobile consumers who regularly visit stores has dropped dramatically in the last 3 years.
The data on this trend in countries such as the United Kingdom, reflect how the number cold calling lists free of weekly clients of these businesses has fallen from 73% registered in 2010 to 47% today. An inversely proportional figure is the number of smartphone users, which has increased from 38% in 2010 to 62% in 2013.
This does not mean that smartphone owners do not buy in physical stores, in fact, only 3% said that they did, but that they do so less frequently.
Buying habits have changed. Now customers, instead of going to stores specifically to buy, come to them to see the product, as one more phase of the buying process. Thus, showrooming has been established as an official practice, essential before deciding to take the product home. In the latest study published by Vibes, it was found that 44% of customers confessed themselves adept to showrooming, while 36% used their mobile phone in the store much more than 2 years ago.
For its part, the study by eDigitalResearch and Portaltech showed revealing data on customer behavior, based on product categories and the influence of online commerce. Thus, in 2010, customers in the United Kingdom bought leisure and entertainment products in physical stores, a practice gulf email list that only 35% currently do. The same happens with handicraft products (DIY), registering 70% in 2010 compared to 45% today and furniture (64% vs 33%).Studies show that the UK is not an isolated case. According to data collected by GfK in “Transforming the Shopping Experience”, customers in the United States use their mobile especially when it comes to buying electronic products (70%), toys (66%), or household equipment. On the other hand, this habit drops considerably when it comes to cleaning products (14%) or food (15%).
Without a doubt, the data can be worrying, especially in the face of the Christmas season, the most important of the year. The perspectives reveal an evolution in consumers, towards a multichannel trend. What companies must be clear about is that customers no longer distinguish between online and offline, pc or mobile, what they want is to find a solution to their needs, regardless of where they are. A trend highlighted by eMarketer’s “Holiday Shopping Preview” report, which emphasizes the need for retailers to strive to offer an integrated experience across multiple channels.