…the practice of visiting a shop or shops in order to examine a product before buying it online at a lower price (Oxford Dictionary Online).
This definition is quite limited – like most of the dictionary definitions actually – since it sounds it does not take into account mobile users. The rapid diffusion of the smartphone and its adoption among consumers while shopping, affected drastically consumers’ behaviour and so showrooming behaviour.
Does mobile affect showrooming behaviour?
Since showrooming implies that consumers look at a product in one channel (i.e. Bricks and mortar), but end at buying it in another (i.e. online), mobile devices such as the smartphone allow consumers to take advantage of both online and offline channels simultaneously.
Indeed, channels boundaries have blurred and are disappearing. Therefore, consumers can now look, touch at the interested product in the store, and at the same time look up for additional information on the Internet through their mobiles , while standing in-store!
Additionally, they can compare prices and buy the product at the best value for them with one simple tap.
- Consumers are likely to end at buying the product from competitors if they find a better deal.
- Showrooming weakens salesperson persuasion power: information asymmetry does no longer exist.
- Businesses that are not able to interact with their customers with in-store mobile strategies can lose sales.
Overall, companies should find the best way to meet customer’s expectations when it comes to mobile during the in-store purchase journey.
Source: Cover photo from Forbes