Like it or not, marketers are finding they must excel in cross-channel retailing to satisfy consumers. According to Compete.com’s Online Shopper Intelligence report,  consumers “are increasingly utilizing offline and online data when shopping.” And consumers exhibit a wide range of behavior using the various channels regardless of whether they purchase an item online or in the store.

Shoppers also value specific  cross-channel services provided by retailers as follows:

  • Online research prior to in-store purchase: 29%
  • Ship to store option for online purchase: 50%+
  • In-store return option makes them more likely to place an online order: 53%
  • Smartphone users who have downloaded a shopping app to the phone: 44%

Marketers should note that the ship-to-store option provides a path to satisfied customers and more sales. The study revealed that 62% of shoppers would choose to use the feature again. In addition, 23% of shoppers also bought other items while they were in the store picking up their online order.

Marketers who ease the cross-channel experience for customers stand to gain business. And as they promote themselves through various channels they also increase  the number of touch points with shoppers.

[Source: Online Shopper Intelligence Study Reports Cross Channel Retailing is Important and Profitable. Compete.com. 27 Apr. 2010. Web. 3 May 2010]