There’s a common misconception floating around at the moment: the physical store is dead, or at the very least, suffering a slow and painful end akin to Leo in Titanic. Tragic.
We don’t buy into this (and neither should you) so we’ve taken a look at the supposedly sad state of retail affairs to set the record straight.
There was a great PwC report released recently on retail in the age of disruption that we wanted to share. In this short video our CEO and Founder, George Freney, talks through some of the key findings (also summarised below).
First up, 36% of the report’s 19,000 respondents shop in physical stores weekly. Yes, weekly. That’s compared to 20% who shop via PC, 10% who shop via tablet and 11% who buy using their mobile each week.
Sounds like brick-and-mortar stores are alive and kicking!
The second thing that became apparent as we were reading was that we can’t be talking about brick-and-mortar stores and online shopping like they’re completely different things. We’re all for a little bit of sibling rivalry, but it doesn’t make sense here. The two work together.
Case in point: customers are getting pushed e-commerce deals when in store, for products that aren’t physical inventory (therefore making an online and in-store purchase simultaneously). Then there is beacon technology taking people from online discovery into a store to view and buy the actual product. Our favourite finding from the PwC report was this one:
70% of consumers are ‘webrooming’ i.e. browsing online but buying in store.
What does this tell us? Mobiles are critical in setting the stage for purchasing, but not necessarily the tool for the actual purchase.
How does all this relate to what we’re doing at Booodl?
Customers are shopping less impulsively, more purposefully and there is greater price transparency. Online shopping will only continue to grow, so the winners will be those who have the best and most seamless Omni channel presence. Retailers need to offer unique, brand-defining experiences to their customers.
Pure convenience is one of those defining factors: enabling your customers to use mobile to check stock and to communicate with you; assisting them in the decision making process and reminding them when it may be convenient to purchase something they want (in a helpful and non-intrusive manner).
This is what we’re laser focused on at Booodl.
The way we discover, remember and buy things is disjointed. We’re fixing that with one smart list of products you want on your phone, and location-based reminders when you’re near a store that stocks something you want. Mobile to physical.
If you’re interested you can read the full PwC report here. We’d love to hear your thoughts – share them in the comments!