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    Bucking the Showrooming Boom

    Aptly communicating sales, promos key to brick-and-mortar success

    Despite the continued encroachment of online heavy-hitters on physical retail – here’s looking at you, Amazon – as well as the softening of boundaries between traditional brick-and-mortar and e-commerce, consumers remain surprisingly loyal to the in-store experience when their desired products are on promotion.

    In fact, 90 percent of consumers repeatedly buy products that retailers have on sale, according to a new survey conducted by global technology startup Synqera, and 85 percent say they return to their favorite brick-and-mortar stores when notified of upcoming sales on their products of choice.

    According to Filipp Shubin, COO of Synqera, there remains an “appetite for customer engagement and retention through clear communication of promotions and sales both prior to the visit and throughout the in-store experience.”

    And let's not forget the all-important asset with which physical retailers will forever one-up their online counterparts: the in-store impulse buy. Although 92 percent of consumers prepare some type of shopping list before heading to the store (68 percent put pen to paper), many Americans habitually make unplanned purchases, and, as a signal that the impulse purchase remains alive and well, half of survey respondents openly describe themselves as “impulse shoppers.”

    Shubin adds that consumers remain “immersed in the brand experience” while in-store, and 96 percent of shoppers desire actionable information about products that are relevant to them.  This is apt advice for retailers looking to buck the showrooming trend, and further evidence of the potential staying power of the brick-and-mortar shopping occasion.

    During last year’s holiday shopping season, retailers’ sales fell substantially despite the hundreds of millions of shopper visits, according to Shubin. In addition to consumers' penny-pinching due to a still uncertain economy, this statistic also supports the assumption that more and more consumers are vetting products in-store and seeking better prices and promotions online. 

    So how do you keep shoppers in your aisles? According to Shubin, “Consumer confidence plays a role but so does innovation in the stores.”

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