Consumers value the mobile experience over loyalty programs, according to a new report by the Acquity Group.
The study, which surveyed more than 1,500 smartphone owners, discovered that loyalty programs were ranked as the lowest priority for in-store shoppers.
The report points to content as king when it comes to in-store experiences, amongst other highlights:
- 78 percent of smartphone owners have looked up a retailer’s inventory online prior to visiting the physical store.
- 59 percent have been influenced to make an in-store purchase decision after browsing product images and information on a smartphone.
- 73 percent would be more likely to purchase from a brand that provides editorial content (social updates, news, or email) that is relevant and interesting to them.
- 32 percent have not yet purchased products posted on social media, but would be open to trying it. Another 16 percent have already purchased items after being influenced by social media posts.
Acquity, a Brand eCommerce agency that commissioned the report, concludes that in-store WiFi is probably a better solution than trying to combat showrooming through loyalty or reward points.
But Doesn’t WiFi Feel Old in an Age of Beacons?
But in an age of iBeacons, I can’t help wondering whether sending content TO the consumer rather than giving them the tools to go out and GET it might make more sense.
With iBeacons, you can use proximity detection to deliver content to a consumer based on exactly where they are in the store, delivering content that’s appropriate for the TV aisle or the DVD section of the store.
While not the same as giving your customers free WiFi so they can price compare on the Web, iBeacons can help to create a rich in-store experience that goes well beyond loyalty programs and showrooming and turns choosing a product into an emotional and digitally connected experience.
Pop a few beacons from Estimote up in your store and you’ve saved yourself a whack of costs for WiFi while unlocking the rich potential of proximity and precision-location marketing.
But what IS clear from the Acquity report might not be the tactics it implies, but the larger strategy of creating experiences over programs. Adds Knicker:
So while coupon programs and reward cards might keep some of your customers coming back, it’s how you think about the broader experience that matters most.
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