Smartphones have changed the way we socialize, travel, check the weather and how we get news.
They have also changed how we shop. Showrooming is a trend in shopper behavior in which
customers visit a brick-and-mortar retail location and decide what item to buy, but instead of buying
that item in-store, they use their mobile device to find a better price – and ultimately purchase online.
Physical stores have advantages, among them is the instant gratification of having the purchased
product in hand. However, online retailers tend to have a price advantage. With less overhead, they
can undercut brick-and-mortar stores, often by a wide margin.
GroupM Next and Catalyst, the leader in search marketing innovation, teamed up to conduct
research in order to provide brands with an understanding of consumer behaviour as it relates
to showrooming in Canada. The question this research attempts to answer is, how much of a
discount will compel a customer to make an online purchase? All else equal, consumers would
prefer to have an item now, rather than later, so how much of a discount will it take for someone
to leave the store and wait for shipping? How many leave for 5% off? What about 10%? How many
shoppers will walk for merely pennies?