Digital and mobile are making the shopping cycle (research, discovery, awareness, and purchase) much shorter and faster than ever before. The growth of digital technology has given consumers access to copious amounts of product information—and they are accessing it. Subscription-based services centered around specific shopper data are delivering an engaging personalized experience, turning shoppers into repeat visitors.
Digital and mobile aren’t just changing the shopper experience. They’re changing the pattern of behavior shoppers exhibit before they purchase. Today, most consumers’ first impulse when contemplating a purchase includes digital research. According to a survey done by Kenshoo, 70% of shoppers use a mobile phone while in a retail store to read reviews. What’s more, 85% of prospective shoppers visit Google to research purchases before they buy. That’s followed by Amazon (72%) and eBay (38%).
What does all this mean for brands and their efforts to drive retail sales? It means they must adjust the way they communicate who they are, and how they say who they are to their audience. Sheryl Sandberg, Chief Operating Officer of Facebook states that for brands to grow in the new marketing landscape, “they must focus on three areas:”
- Focus on your brand mission
- Building communities
- Engaging those communities long-term
Building and engaging communities is something Amazon has done successfully given its position as the most important component in many consumers’ shopping journeys.
The world’s largest online retailer has now also become the second most used platform for search (behind Google) for product research. Amazon customers go even further with their research, as users also check for background information and alternatives, an important way to comparison shop with brick and mortar stores.
With the number of products Amazon carries and over 300 million active account holders, and now its reputation as a media platform where users and visitors come to research and compare products, the online retail giant is becoming a place where brands are turning for focused ad campaigns. Marketing directly to consumers through an e-commerce channel like Amazon gives you an already engaged and ready-to-buy audience.
There is a significant transformation taking place in the retail space, and digital and mobile are the prominent drivers in altering long-standing shopper behavior. With the rise of digital and the convenience of mobile, consumers shop everywhere and at any time. And that’s the sweet spot for Shopper Marketing.