This story was delivered to BI Intelligence “E-Commerce Industry Insider” subscribers. To learn more and subscribe, please click here.The continued growth of e-commerce means fewer people are shopping in stores, so retailers are doing all they can to keep those in-store customers engaged.
This includes the implementation of several new techniques, and video ads seem to be the most effective, according to a report from Impax Media cited by Venture Beat. Digital signs within stores are 34% more effective at promoting items than still images such as posters and circulars, according to the report.
Furthermore, 84% of U.S. customers said that watching content on digital displays makes the time spent waiting in checkout lines pass more quickly, while 40% of consumers are more likely to shop in grocery stores that have video screens in checkout lanes.
A total of 76% of shoppers want content that shows what is on sale within the store, and 69% want to see details about upcoming events in the store.
But the digital signage does not have to be limited to sales and in-store events, as 75% of U.S. shoppers said they want to see weather reports and 64% want to see community events.
This data indicates that retailers have a tremendous opportunity to work with digital media publishers to increase engagement with in-store shoppers. Publishers and e-commerce entities have been working more closely in the last year, as Mashable, Time, and People Magazine have all opened online shopping portals.
Brick-and-mortar stores can use digital signage to assist consumers by, for example, showing popular clothing items as a shopper browses the racks in the clothing section.
This is just one strategy that retailers are using to try to drive up customer engagement and reach shoppers in new and innovative ways.
Cooper Smith, senior research analyst at BI Intelligence, Business Insider’s premium research service, has compiled a detailed report on new e-commerce strategies that looks at some of the top trends affecting retailers at each stage of the purchase funnel and how they’re responding to those shifts.
BI IntelligenceHere are some of the key takeaways:
- Within digital, consumers are spreading out their retail purchasing across channels, forcing retailers to spread out their online marketing budgets. Paid search, affiliate marketing, and email all increased their share of e-commerce referrals last year, according to Custora.
- Paid search especially stood out as a major source of spending by retailers. Search ad spending grew 18% YoY in Q4 2015, according to IgnitionOne.
- Mobile continues to drive the most sales growth for retailers, but sales still aren’t keeping up with retail traffic. IBM found that smartphone traffic beat both tablet and desktop, making up 53% of all online traffic. But mobile still only accounted for 29% of all online sales.
- Retailers only have themselves to blame for underperformance on mobile, as many still aren’t using best practices for mobile websites and apps. Only 60% of the top 100 global retailers currently have a dedicated mobile website, according to The Search Agency.
- The increase in online shopping has put stress on the shipping and logistics industry. The number of UPS ground packages delivered on time during the holidays fell from 97% in 2014 to 91% in 2015, according to ShipMatrix.
- Retailers are beginning to explore alternative shipping options. Earlier this year Gilt Groupe switched its primary ground shipper from UPS to Newgistics.
- Retailers that can’t afford to invest in alternative shipping options are offering consumers more fulfillment options using what many of them do have — brick-and-mortar stores. Buying online and picking up in-store, also called click and collect, made up about 30% of e-commerce sales at Sam’s Club in 2015.
In full, the report:
- Looks at how retailers are shifting their ad spending and marketing efforts to keep up with online retail behavior
- Identifies which channels are top performers for referral traffic and new opportunities for reaching consumers
- Analyzes how retailers are responding to the rise of mobile purchasing and where they’re falling short
- Examines the evolving delivery landscape and the aggressive moves retailers are making to become their own shipping carriers
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