Make ROPO Work for You this Peak Season | Radial

Make ROPO Work for You this Peak Season

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person shopping for shoes on tablet
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From customer reviews to product information, store locations, and availability, nearly 88% of customers do research before making a purchase.¹ And with eCommerce shopping booming, this number is likely to grow.  

This presents a great opportunity for retail and eCommerce brands, as ROPO (research online purchase offline) trends open the door to new marketing, customer engagement, and customer support options.  

In this post, we’ll look at three ways businesses can leverage their online and offline information for omnichannel retailing success. Let’s get started. 

 What is ROPO? 

Research online, purchase offline is a multi-step approach to purchasing that involves online product research and in-store purchases. Often these steps are done in order, but as omnichannel experiences continue to grow in popularity and ROI, the line between the two is blurring.  

In fact, 80% of customers are now using their mobile phones inside brick-and-mortar stores to look up customer reviews, find other locations that carry the product, and see how your prices stack up against your competitors.² And according to RetailNext, 84% of customers believe that brands should do even more to integrate their online and offline channels.³ 

But the real question is: how do you take advantage of this ROPO trend (and the reverse ROPO trend)? Here are a few ways.  

Optimize Your Website 

Whether your customers are researching your products from their couch or one of your aisles, the information they need should be readily accessible. Product pages should include accurate (and helpful) size charts and color descriptions. Online and in-store prices should be transparent. You should also include aisle information, if possible, as this will enable your customers to quickly find what they’re looking for when they arrive at a physical location.  

Not only can offering all of this information shorten your customers’ decision-making process significantly, but it can also improve your shoppers’ satisfaction and perception of your brand. 

Offer Mobile Shortcuts 

Since many customers will visit your website again while they’re in your stores, your site must be as mobile-friendly as possible on every device. Here are some ways you can do that: 

  • Make your site intuitive and easy to navigate from all mobile devices 
  • Use product QR codes to help customers find in-store items on your website quickly 
  • Highlight a selected product’s location on a digital store map  

By combining these strategies with those listed above and below, you can elevate the research process and shopping experience for every omnichannel customer.  

Embrace Omnichannel Technology 

In addition to the information already mentioned, your customers need to know how much inventory you have and where that inventory is located to decide where to shop.  

Using omnichannel order management technology, you can more easily deliver this information -- as your teams can track inventory in every warehouse, fulfillment center, and store in real-time. This information can then be used to update product pages on individual location websites, thus giving customers the most up-to-date information available.  

Whether your customers shop omnichannel, online, offline, or mix and match their shopping preferences, many are going to do research before making a purchase. As a result, the better optimized your product pages are for every device and the more real-time your product availability is, the better able you will be to provide customers with the information they’re after.  

 

Sources:

¹ “Consumers Are Increasingly Researching Purchases Online,” PYMNTS, January 2018 

² “Mobile eCommerce Stats in 2021 and the Future Online Shopping Trends of mCommerce,” Outerbox, January 2021 

³ “33 Statistics Retail Marketers Need to Know in 2021,” Invoca, July 2021 

 

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