Retailers ‘must adapt to showrooming’

New research has revealed that as many as a fifth of consumers are now going into shops to try out products but checking on their mobile devices to get the best price.

The study, which was conducted by Aprimo, shows that many people are now using the strategy known as “showrooming” and a third of those doing so say they do use the information from their mobile device to buy elsewhere.

The survey, which was developed in part by market research firm Forrester Research, also found that 96% of respondents intend to use their smartphone to research prices as much or more in future and Sucharita Mulpuru says retailers need to adjust.

“This research confirms what many in the retail industry have suspected: showrooming is here to stay,” said the principal analyst at Forrester Research.

“Retailers must seriously consider ways to avoid losing sales this way by using strategies such as price matching, personalised in-store service and loyalty programmes.”

The study suggests that stores need to focus less on products and features and be more customer-focused, using technology themselves to engage the buyer and offer a more personalised experience.