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3 main challenges for converting browsers into buyers

by Marco Wolters , 27.06.2017

Imagine a potential customer is browsing in your store or on your website. They linger a little over one of your products and it’s clear that they’re interested. So how do you convert this browser into a buyer? There’s competition coming from every angle and consumer spending isn’t growing, especially in mature markets. As a retailer, you need to work harder than ever to convert browsers into buyers.

Challenge one: Keep visitors on your website

Regardless of whether you’re selling fashion or other non-food products online, if you have a website, you are a retailer. Your primary goal is to keep shoppers on your site, which provides the basis for a seamless customer journey. No matter if they are visiting your website to buy, research prices or check stock availability in the nearest store, the longer you keep shoppers’ eyeballs fixed on your website without them moving to your competitors’, the better your prospects of converting browsers into buyers.

Your primary goal is to keep shoppers on your site, which provides the basis for a seamless customer journey. Making sure your site is rich in content and is fully optimized for search is essential – for more tips, see our blogs on user experience and product content.

Challenge two: Convert browsers in-store to buyers

It’s the same challenge in the physical shopping environment too. With competition for consumers’ discretionary spending so fierce, you won’t want to let people leave your store without them buying from you. If you don’t have the right size, color or style, you must help them to order it from your website. Provide tablets in-store to help customers order online. Offer Click & Collect and free delivery to facilitate that all important sale.

If you don’t have exactly what shoppers are looking for, you must help them to order it from your website.

Challenge three: Understand the shopper journey

Today’s Connected Consumer shops in a hugely varied and complex way. If you can understand shopping behavior and journeys, you can maximize the path to purchase. Crucially, you can ensure your brand is present in “the moment of truth” when a purchase is made. The key to success here is your omnichannel strategy. It’s not enough to be on all channels, you must understand the types of consumer behavior that they evoke and flex the strengths of each to support your particular conversion patterns for all relevant shopper types.

Cracking shopper conversion

Using behavioral data from the passive measurement of different channels can help retailers understand purchase journeys in order to maximize the omnichannel environment. Each brand journey is different, however, if you can understand why someone didn’t buy a jumper online, or why that person walked out of one store and straight into another to buy a similar item, you have the intelligence to crack shopper conversion.

Marco Wolters is Global Industry Lead Fashion, Home & Lifestyle on the enter department/area team at GfK. He can be reached at Marco.Wolters@gfk.com.