Marketers to Increase Cross-​Channel Promotion

Consumers have long used multiple channels to research and purchase products. In many ways, the Internet has improved consumers’ ability to find what they are looking for but they continue to turn to traditional resources such as catalogs. And while channels such as catalogs still matter, they are becoming more of a research than purchase tool these days.

According to a consumer research study commissioned by ATG, consumers use the following number of channels to research products they’re considering purchasing:

  • One: 22%
  • Two: 48%
  • Three: 24%
  • Four 2%
  • More than four: 4%

These sources might include catalogs, a company Web site, social media feedback or an in-​store discussion with a sales associate. Study analysts point out that “in order to make the sale, merchants must use catalogs to link potential buyers to other sales channels, such as the Web, where they might be more inclined to make a purchase.”

The other main finding of this study is that mobile commerce is emerging as a key channel for promotional opportunity. Nearly 1 in 3 younger consumers, those between the ages of 18 and 34, uses mobile phones and other devices to research products and services at least once a month. As a result, when merchants engage in promotions via mobile channels using social media, they have an opportunity to reach the nearly 1 in 4 consumers who  “incorporate their online purchasing activities on social networks like Facebook, Twitter and MySpace.”

The bottom line from this study is that consumers use multiple channels to discover and research products. Today, more than ever, the marketer’s message must work well across multiple channels. Increasingly, this will mean using the mobile channel to connect with younger consumers who are just beginning to develop their shopping patterns.

[Source: Cross-​Channel Commerce: The Consumer View. ATG. March 2010. Web. 2 Apr. 2010] 
Kathy Crosett
Kathy is the Vice President of Research for SalesFuel. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and oversees a staff of researchers, writers and content providers for SalesFuel. Previously, she was co-​owner of several small businesses in the health care services sector.