It is a fact beyond doubt that women are responsible for 85% of all buying decisions in the US, and the most recent studies that have been conducted on this field show that, for the most part, Prefer to buy in-store personally.
They like to see, touch and feel the product they are thinking about buying, while enjoying the social interactions that arise from buying with friends and family.
Their mobile devices have become invaluable tools in the decision-making process on what and where to buy. Traders have a unique opportunity to take advantage of these new habits by first understanding the preferences of women, who decide when and where to open the wallet.
An independent study of 1,000 women found that 76% of them preferred physical stores for clothing purchases, while 22% preferred online stores, and the remaining 2% preferred to do so on their smartphones or tablets.
But let’s not think that women do not use their smartphones. In fact, according to a recent Google-sponsored study, 66% of smartphone owners use their device to help them buy while in a store. Much has been written about “showrooming”, the practice of using smartphones to look for lower prices and buy online after having seen the merchandise in the physical store. But women also use their smartphones to receive advice on style and fashion, look for product information and special offers or discounts while they buy. Instead of being afraid of this behavior, traders should find ways to take advantage of it.
How? By putting in place mobile strategies and technologies that improve the shopping experience in the store.
Women shop in physical stores for a variety of reasons, including seeing and touching the product (92%), trying out the pieces of clothing (90%) and discovering new styles and fashions (70%). It is an immersive and sensorial experience that can never be replicated online, and is for brands a critical contact point for consumers.
More advanced marketers are exploring the different possibilities of improving and driving engagement with their customers while in the store and in so doing, indirectly reduce consumer showrooming practices. Giving consumers something of value in their smartphones, instead of discouraging the use of devices in stores, is the best way to boost loyalty, increase purchases and encourage consumers to return to the store.
Both consumers and merchants know that offers and promotions stimulate purchases. A survey of female shoppers revealed that 31% of them had bought clothing or shoes more than once attracted by an on-site offer, and another 33% liked having him or her dependent offered it while in the store. But what happens when the offer arrives in a much more personalized and relevant way through a mobile device?
The number of women who would be delighted if they received these personalized offers on their Smartphone while they are buying at the store, jumps up to 58%. It’s all a matter of context. The best time and the best place to make offers in when and where consumers are buying.
While privacy concerns and phone location data are increasing for consumers and lawmakers, women are just as interested in receiving really relevant deals as they are buying, who are willing to make significant concessions in this field.
In fact, 47% of women would share information about their location in exchange for a credit equivalent to about $ 5. If we increase that credit to 25 dollars, the percentage of consumers willing to share their location would jump to 83%.
The good news for traders is that women prefer to shop in stores, not online. The personal attention and sensory experience of shopping in the trade is so strong that they leave no room for doubt: in the shop before in the computer or in the mobile device.
Yes, most may be using their smartphones while shopping in stores, but this behavior is an opportunity, not a risk to traders. Smartphones and location-based marketing have created a whole new way of relating to the consumer and customizing the shopping experience in the store.