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ATLANTA — Although brick-and-mortar purchases accounted for 94 percent of all U.S. retail sales in 2014, retailers must understand how consumers use mobile devices in-store as well as the effectiveness of loyalty programs and traditional in-store marketing tactics along the path to purchase, according to InReality's inaugural Reality of Retail report.
"We know the rapidly accelerating growth and adoption of technology is disrupting retail as shoppers are researching and buying online; and yet we also know that the overwhelming majority of retail dollars spent by shoppers is still within brick-and-mortar," stated Gary Lee, president and CEO of InReality, a retail strategy and marketing firm. "Our research focuses on uncovering the 'tug of war' brewing inside stores as shoppers choose the best of online and in-store marketing."
While traditional in-store marketing is still critically important to shoppers, technology, particularly mobile technology, is having an impact on the store, according to Lee.
The report shows that not all shoppers do all their research online, as 53 percent of all surveyed shoppers prefer to research product in-store, and 57 percent of those ages 18-24 prefer the same. However, 75 percent of shoppers are using their mobile devices in-store, and 25 percent of shoppers go a step further and actually make a purchase using their mobile devices while in-store.
The report also reports that 56 percent of shoppers still think advertising is important to their purchase decision in-store, but only 12 percent of shoppers believe the in-store sales associate is an important touch point in their purchase decision. Additionally, only 46 percent of shoppers who use loyalty programs consider them to be important to the decision to purchase, and 71 percent of shoppers who use loyalty programs use their mobile device to compare prices anyway.
The full report, along with recommendations for brands and retailers, is available for download here.