Posted by Elena M. on 17 Nov 2020
How can physical stores take advantage of online?
Online is increasingly ubiquitous. Thinking about the conversion path by the user, the use of digital channels is the master both in the information search phase and in the purchase completion phase.
After-sales has also become a favorite terrain for digital: reviews and customer care are just two of the many areas in which contact between companies and customers takes place via online platforms.
The forced lockdown has certainly accelerated this approach, further distancing buyers from physical retail spaces.
Just think. that, according to some research, the use of technology by companies has accelerated by about five years in a few weeks.
The time spent online by users has increased like never before. It is therefore legitimate to ask how the relationship of users with physical stores has changed.
It's a tough time for brick-and-mortar store owners, but maximizing their online presence can help them reach potential customers who want to shop in person.
According to various researches, in fact, a new need for customers clearly emerges: to have a shopping experience that is as fluid as possible between online and offline.
Let's see in detail how consumers' shopping habits in physical stores are changing.
Scheduled store visits
Today, consumers are more careful in planning a visit to the store and interest in information updated in real time has grown.
People want to know what to expect from a store before they go there, to know the opening hours, the availability of products in stock and whether it is possible to collect their purchases.
For retailers, it is therefore essential to make this information available through their social channels, the website or the Google My Business card dedicated to the activity.
Preference for local shops
People find it more important to shop in local stores, closer to home. According to the data put in. available from Google, searches containing the words "near me", in fact, have increased by 300% over the last few months.
The pandemic has made people more flexible with regards to online or offline purchases: according to Google, 73% describe themselves as indifferent to the choice of the sales channel (an increase of 65% from the pre-crisis period). From a Euromonitor research it is expected that the majority of purchases will still be made in physical stores by 2024 (78% of the total, compared to 22% of online purchases).
Even those who manage a business apparently exclusively offline, should know and develop digital tools to maximize their visibility. It is essential to measure the impact of online campaigns on store visits and sales. To understand how best to hijack assets in order to maximize their benefits.
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