Shopify recently had a great article about Showrooming and Webrooming. (Shopify’s blog is an amazing resource, by the way). You may have never heard these terms before and they probably sound odd, but they are actions that you encounter as a retailer and consumer every day.
Showrooming occurs when a person visits a brick and mortar store to check out a product. They feel it, try it on, test it out, but don’t buy it. Then they go home, get online, and find a cheaper web retailer to buy that same product. So the brick and mortar retail store becomes just a showroom to the consumer where no actual transaction takes place.
Webrooming is the opposite. It occurs when consumers research products online and then go into the store to feel a product and make a final purchase decision. They’re confident enough in the product to visit the store, but want to actually feel it in their hands before making the final buy. This is a trend we have been seeing a long time with bigger purchases like cars. They are high dollar products that take serious consideration before purchasing. Plus car salesmen often get bad raps as, well, salesmen instead of being considered a part of the product education process. So many people will do all their research online and often times show up to the dealership with more knowledge about a car than the sales staff. Now it’s happening with more everyday, lower price point type purchases.
Shopify agrees that neither webrooming or showrooming are necessarily bad things or detrimental to a retailer. It’s just a shift in consumer behavior with the digital age. But as a retailer you want to keep those customers engaged so they build loyalty with your brand. You don’t want them browsing in your brick and mortar store and then going home to buy off a dealer on Amazon. If anything, you want them to go home and buy from your eCommerce store if not in the brick and mortar.
This is obviously a call to action to get moving on the omnichannel game. Connectivity and multi screen lifestyles seem to just be in our nature now. There’s no going back. So as a retail brand you need to make sure you have customer touchpoints and purchase portals across every platform, be it mobile, desktop, in-store, or social. Make your brand available everywhere and at anytime.
But as solely an eCommerce retailer, how can you keep your customers online instead of taking their business to someone’s brick and mortar for that final purchase decision? Webrooming may actually be hurting your business if you don’t have a physical storefront. You need to provide that tangible, human experience customers want that they typically go to the store for. eCommerce video does just that.
Video Review Labs set out in the first place to arm customers with product knowledge and purchasing confidence. We want to keep the eCommerce sales cycle fluid and easy so they don’t have to go visit the store and feel something in real life. We can effectively communicate tangible product features and benefits through great eCommerce video. As an online retailer, providing that value to your customers as a resource for product knowledge and one stop shopping is invaluable. It builds trust and strengthens your brand as a whole.
So let’s talk. Email or call us at Video Review Labs so we can explore your eCommerce video options. We can evaluate where you are with your omnichannel presence and see if showrooming and webrooming are affecting your business. We’ll take the steps to set up an eCommerce video strategy that will adapt to your customers’ behavior, empower them with the resources they need when they need them, and boost your bottom line.
Go deeper into the webrooming vs. showrooming situation with this infographic released by Merchant Warehouse. Tell us where you think things are going with retail and what steps you are taking to adapt.