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The positives of offline retail in conjunction with ecommerce

April 26th, 2012

The positives of offline retail in conjunction with ecommerce

There are lots of reasons why having a bricks and mortar store can be a success.

Organisations should not worry about climbing online retail sales and the use of mobile phones to browse and purchase products, a new GfK report has noted.

Offline retail is still an important part of multichannel marketing strategies, with the authors using firms that sell technology products as an example.

1. Shopping on the high street is still convenient

Make sure you deploy an effective multichannel strategy. Call Chris Sheath on 0870 898 2260 to find out how NewsReach can help.While online shopping is seen as convenient – there is no need to roam around different stores or drive anywhere, and closing times can't be missed – shoppers still have to wait for items to be delivered. Gadget enthusiasts can get hold of items in-store within minutes, and should the product need to be returned, there are no repackaging and postal costs to pay.

2. Shopping on the high street allows for guidance

When shopping for products such as tech ones, there are so many choices, it can be difficult to know where to begin. While reading online reviews is a good place to start, having a one-to-one conversation with a staff member can be quicker.

3. Shopping on the high street means goods can be seen

There is no need to worry about a product not being what a consumer expected, as shopping in-store means it can be looked at, held and tested. The GfK report highlights the bustling Apple stores as an example of high street success.

Consumers move between channels, such as researching online, looking in-store and then going back on the internet to purchase the product at the cheapest price.

The JiWire Mobile Audience Insights Report Q4 2011 recently stated that over a third of consumers use mobile devices in-store to compare prices and products, while three-quarters of mobile shoppers said they respond to location-based messages.

"Today's shopping experience means that awareness of products and increased footfall can be raised through online marketing using tools such as coupon codes, location-based promotions and optimised search terms. Products can increasingly be reserved online before going in-store to check the product out and make the purchase," the report noted.

What are your thoughts on the role of high street stores in today's increasingly online shopping environment?

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