Have you ever gone into a store, found a product you wanted to buy and then pulled out your smartphone to check reviews or search for a better price online? It might feel like you’re cheating the system, but you’re not alone. This is the way people shop today -- and it’s called showrooming.
Google published research in May 2013 on how mobile is transforming the shopping experience in stores. It found that “84 percent of shoppers use their phones while in a physical store.”
Flipping Your Perspective
Showrooming impacted the shopping experience on Black Friday. A November 2013 report titled Holiday Shopper Profile: Offline Insights into Thanksgiving and Black Friday Shoppers by Placed, provider of location-driven insights and mobile ad intelligence, revealed that “43 percent of shoppers plan to compare prices online while they are in a physical retail store.” While some retailers may see showrooming as a threat -- perhaps it could also be an opportunity?
By examining the myriad ways that consumers can showroom, it’s possible to determine what poses a threat and what serves as a potential opportunity for retailers.
Seize the Moment
Let’s look at the different opportunities and threats: