The advent of showrooming has caused retailers to be wary that digital channels — especially mobile technology — will cannibalize in-store sales. However, a new Deloitte study confirms that mobile technology has the opposite effect, with shoppers converting at a 40% higher rate when they interact with a brand on digital channels prior to visiting a store.
For the report, titled: The New Digital Divide, Deloitte surveyed approximately 2,000 U.S. consumers to estimate the percentage of in-store sales influenced by digital devices.
Digital channels are expected to influence $1.5 trillion in brick-and-mortar sales by the end of 2014. Of all product categories, electronics and appliances are most affected by digital channels (58%), followed by grocery (29%) and wholesale products (23%).
Retailers are tasked to analyze and measure a new set of KPIs to capture consumer attention and dollars. Understanding key digital shopping trends will give retailers the knowledge they need to create more relevant and engaging marketing tactics across channels, helping them keep pace in a competitive market.
For example, 59% of consumers said they would rather use their personal mobile devices to look up a price instead of consulting a sales associate (17%). Consumers also are more willing to make a payment through their mobile devices (48%) rather than at the cash register (24%).
Survey results, overall, concluded that shoppers have more independence during the product researching and comparison process. More than half (52%) of shoppers are using their mobile devices to look up product information, while 51% of shoppers use their mobile devices to check store inventory. This is a significant uptick compared to the 20% of consumers who ask sales associates for product information and 27% who use unmanned devices located in the store to see if an item is in stock.
Information accessible on digital channels can significantly affect a consumer’s relationship with a brand. The majority (75%) of consumers said product information found on social channels influenced their shopping behaviors and enhanced their loyalty to a brand. Retailers also have the opportunity to sell more products in-store by embracing digital marketing strategies: 22% of brick-and-mortar customers said they spent more money after using digital tools and technologies throughout their shopping journeys.
Click here to download the full report.