A new report by BIGresearch finds a vast majority of US consumers are conducting product research online before making an offline purchase, a signal to retailers that they should integrate their in-store and online marketing efforts closely.
BIGresearch polled over 7,300 US consumers in February as part of its monthly measurement of trends in consumer behavior. About three-quarters of respondents said they regularly or occasionally go online to conduct research before making an in-store purchase. These habits extend across gender lines – 74% of both males and females say they occasionally or regularly research one or more products online.
BIGresearch reports that many retailers are missing the boat when it comes to influencing consumers. Joe Pilotta, Ph.D., of BIGresearch, notes that “most retailers have focused on their in-store experience but for many consumers online research is replacing the store as a way of gathering information on products and pricing before purchasing at the store level. The new consumer shopping model fits the needs of today’s shopper who is more knowledgeable and wants to have the option of purchasing goods and services where they want, when they want. Retailers who focus only on in-store shopping risk losing incremental sales opportunities as both men and women are equally engaged in this dynamic.”