A person walks in a John Lewis shop willing to buy, in example, a toaster. Once she has compared all the options she makes a decision on which model wants to buy.
Not everything is perfect though, that offer, the cheapest one, is at a site ehe had never heard of. Is it a web site she could trust?
A second later that person realizes there is a section in the product comparison site called "seller ratings". It turns out that web page he had never heard of has more than 500 ratings and they average 4.8 out of 5.
Oh, they offer free delivery and the toaster will be delivered in just two days. Decision made! That persons buys the toaster on the Internet using her smartphone without even having left the store.
The nightmare for any retailer.
Some numbers (trying to demonstrate the example is not an isolate case)
- In a near future everyone will have a smartphone in the pocket. At the entry (sorry it is in Spanish) Think Mobile First I explain why I believe this
- Approximately 70% of smartphone owners use it while shopping (Google/MMA , Global Perspectives: The Smartphone User & Mobile Marketer, June 2011 - slide 17)
- 20% have changed their mind about purchasing a product or service in store as a result of information gathered using their smartphone (Ipsos MediaCT Germany - Mobile Internet Insights Spain - slide 28)
- Half of smartphone owners that change their buying decision in the store because they found the product cheaper on the Internet or at another store (Informe Mary Meeker / KPCB sobre tendencias de Internet 2011 - slide 33)
The impact (which is a Fermi's problem since this reports and statistics are not 100% comparable and the impact will depend on multiple variables: categories, retailers, regions, etc)
In the near future approximately 14% of all your clients will change their buying decision in your store as a result of the information they will find with their smartphone. Half of those clients, 7% of your clients, will change their mind because they will find the same product but cheaper on the Internet or another store.
What are you doing about it?
Javier Arias González