By Aaron Romero on September 18, 2015
For many organizations, the growth in online traffic and sales has been astonishing over the past few years. However, a bulk of consumer transactions still occurs in physical stores. As a result, marketing teams find great success focusing on driving in-store sales. We get it, but recommend a hybrid approach that bridges the gap from online to offline. With online marketing channels usually serving as the first touch-point on modern consumer journeys, it is essential to understand how to effectively drive customers from online interest to in-store sales.
Here are 4 proven ways to drive in-store sales from online:
1: Incentivize Users to Shop In-store
A great way of driving online-to-offline sales is to incentivize customers with exclusive in-store only offers, easily facilitated by the use of coupon codes. Coupon codes have long been used to track advertising mediums such as print, direct mail, TV, radio, etc. and offer an efficient means of tracking offline conversions.
When tracking online-to-offline affiliate sales, the key is to use unique coupon codes for each of your ads and/or for each of your affiliate partners for better granularity of tracking and accuracy in attribution. As customers provide the coupon code in-store to claim the offer you’re promoting in the ads, the used coupon codes can be matched back to the ads and/or partners to calculate their performance.
If you’re worried about policing those promo codes, Impact Radius allows you to expire coupon codes and blacklist any media partner that abuses these offers.
2: Utilize Mobile
Consumers who use mobile devices before and during their shopping experience convert at a 40% higher rate¹. Utilizing mobile features such as push notifications and mobile coupons, and employing techniques such as gamification is an effective means of driving in-store sales.
Push notifications can drive in-store sales through mobile apps by enabling advertisers to notify users of new in-store products, events and offers even when they are not actively using an app. Mobile coupon codes can also be leveraged to drive offline sales from mobile, encouraging customers to continually shop in-stores.
Employing gamification techniques in apps can drive in-store sales by making shopping more fun. After all, a smartphone is a fun tool. With an engaging and interactive game, retailers can better engage in-store shoppers and increase the average order value and sales in stores. Shoe Carnival offers a great example of this gamification, where every shopper with a smartphone can ‘spin a wheel of savings’ within the Shoe Carnival mobile app to win discounts and prizes that can be redeemed in-store.
3: Offer ‘Buy Online, Pickup In-Store’
One the most effective means of driving customers from engaging with a brand online to an in-store purchase is offering them the ability to buy or reserve online and pickup in-store. In-store pickups add convenience to consumers who look to waive delivery fees and the extra time it takes to receive their product by mail.
Often getting a customer to come in is all it takes to increase sales as customers impulsively pick up additional items as they collect their orders.
4: Implement Location-Based Marketing
Abetted by the proliferation of smartphones, another effective means of driving in-store sales from online is through the implementation of location-based marketing. Modern smartphones usually have built-in navigation and location identifiers that allow businesses to know where an individual is located, thus enabling the geo-targeting of prospective customers.
Targeting customers by proximity, for example sending a push notification with a 20% off coupon code to app-users who are within a 100 meter radius of a store, is one way that location-based marketing can be successfully utilized to drive in-store sales. Research shows that a colossal 72% of customers say that they will respond to call-to-actions in marketing messages they received within sight of a retailer². Any more reason needed to implement location-based marketing?
Understanding your customers and their online behaviours will enable you to successfully utilize online methods to drive in-store sales. Insight into each marketing channel, including how they interact with one another and the value they drive, will give you a clear indication of the best online-to-offline marketing strategy to employ.
Impact Radius’ technology provides marketers with the data and flexibility in reporting to make informed marketing decisions and best utilize marketing spend.