Because shopping information is omnipresent -- we can look up product and pricing info on our phones at any time, from any place -- today's retailer must offer a consistent buying experience across channels too. This is an omnichannel experience.
New research from PriceGrabber has found that most U.S. online consumers plan to shop this year combining online, brick-and-mortar and mobile retail channels.
“A consumer might research a product online, look at it up close in a store, solicit opinions from friends via social networks, use a mobile phone to check competitors’ prices, but ultimately buy it in-store using PayPal on their phone,” said Jeffrey Grau, eMarketer principal analyst in an article today.
“What will matter most is whether the experience was smooth. If the retailer disappoints the shopper during any of these channel handoffs, it will reflect poorly not only on that channel but on the brand as a whole.”
The majority of shoppers polled (45%) plan to combine online, brick-and-mortar and mobile shopping efforts in 2012, versus 42% who plan to shop mostly online, 12% who plan to shop mostly in physical stores and a mere 1% who plan to shop primarily from their mobile device (see above graph).