Online and mobile commerce may have experienced big spikes this holiday season, but 91 percent of shoppers still chose to visit physical stores.
The vast majority of shoppers—198 million—visited a brick and mortar location between Nov. 1 and Dec. 25, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC). The traffic is largely buoyed by retailers’ omnichannel efforts, including those to make stores more personal.
“Looking back at the holiday season, the major trend that emerged is the prevalence of the omnichannel consumer and the resulting convergence among brick and mortar and digital retail,” said Tom McGee, president and CEO of ICSC. “The story of bricks vs. clicks is an old one. The story is now one of a shopper getting the best of both worlds, using online research and capabilities to inform physical purchases. The American consumer has sent a clear message that the physical store remains at the epicenter of the shopping experience.”
Seeing, touching and trying on merchandise was cited the number one reason to shop in store by 32 percent of respondents in ICSC’s Holiday Consumer Purchasing Trends report, followed by the ability to browse (26 percent) and the ability to get the item right away (24 percent).
Shoppers also embraced the ease of returning and exchanging products in store, with 20 percent of shoppers choosing to shop in-store because of this advantage. A recent survey by Retale found that 64 percent of shoppers prefer to make holiday returns in stores.
Still, digital shopping played a big role this season according to ICSC, as close to 60 percent of shoppers used a mobile device in-store to check prices and availability, and read ratings and reviews.
Click-and-collect also proved popular with shoppers as nearly one third opted for the service and a whopping 69 percent made additional purchases at the time of collection.
Read more at FierceRetail
2016 is the year that main street businesses — merchants, hospitality, quickserve restaurants, retail and more — will begin leveraging mobile ‘passport’ applications to serve existing customers and grow revenue from neighborhood and community-wide new business.
Large national retailers such as Macys, Nordstrom, Starbucks have been testing mobile and ‘proximity’ marketing solutions for several years, all of which transform their retail operations with smart new mobile engagement services. Today, even small businesses have the same power and opportunity to leverage their customers smartphones for new services, new digital connection, mobile ‘punchcards’ and more.
These mobile applications are made available by WiLocal, a Laguna Niguel-based proximity marketing technology firm focusing on main street businesses.
“Transitioning tried and true loyalty programs like this passport program onto the mobile device allows much more flexibility and accountability for all stakeholders involved in the promotion,” Dickey went on to say. “We have seen that Laguna Niguel residents are very comfortable with smartphones and other devices, and merchants are becoming more aware of the value that mobile applications can play in their loyalty programs.”
WiLocal offers small to mid-sized business owners a powerful proximity marketing solutions to engage and interact with customers via smartphones and Wi-Fi. We utilize location based messaging and a social-powered Wi-Fi hotspot to accomplish a cost-effective and simple approach to retaining customers and driving more sales! WiLocal’s proximity marketing bundle combine’s location based notification, with real time updates and semi-permanent mobile wallet passes for both iPhone and Android wallets. Our bundle also includes automating marketing list by offering free Wi-Fi in your venue or store. We help turn your customers into fans using Social Powered Free Wi-Fi and Mobile Marketing. Contact us today!