Deloitte recently launched a new study about the relation between online & offline sales and customer behaviour. The most important conclusions:
- Over 80% of in-store shoppers have been using a computer or smartphone before or while visiting the store.
- Over 20% of the shoppers say they spend more because they did their homework before the visited the store.
- 75% of the shoppers say social media influences their purchases.
Zooming in to just garden purchases the following results came out this survey:
- Influence by PC, smartphone and tablet for garden purchases is 42%
- And for just smartphones its 22%, which means 22% of the shoppers has been using a smartphone to research purchases.
Deloitte also surveyed the way shoppers prefer to lookup particular information about products. It appears the smartphone is the premier device, even above the sales associate. Smartphone apparently give better information than sales associates:
So overall more and more consumers are using digital channels to decide what they are going to buy in your garden centre. How can you benefit from this trend? First of all, don’t think “digital” is equal to “competition”. Internet is changing the retail landscape indefinitely but fact is that most purchases are still made offline, in brick & mortar stores like yours.
Secondly it’s important to have a proper digital presence:
- A website with inspiring gardening tips, regular (weekly) updates and product information
- Presence and interaction on social media. Interaction is not just publishing your offers, it’s talking with your customers!
- A proper e-mail newsletter for your customers.
- Optional: a click & collect webshop so your website will be an online showroom for your garden centre
- A search engine optimisation strategy that works
Last but not least it’s important to include online in the overall marketing strategy of your garden centre to be sure you don’t skip this rapidly growing channel as it’s clearly a good way to drive more sales in your store!
Please check http://www.deloitte.com/assets/Dcom-UnitedStates/Local%20Assets/Documents/us_RD_Thenewdigitaldivide_041814.pdf for the full report.
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