How Do Promotions Affect the Consumer’s Shopping Journey?

There’s nothing new about this – consumers like a good bargain. In a recent report titled, “The Significant Impact of Promotions Across the Multi-Channel Consumer Shopping Journey,” by RetailMeNot, a prominent online coupon site, promotions are the top demand from consumers when asked what ad types would most increase their likelihood of buying a product or brand. Sixty percent of consumers decide to “like” a company on Facebook because it offers special deals to its Facebook fans.

While consumers liking promotions is nothing new, it’s interesting to look at the effects of promotions at each stage of the consumer’s shopping journey from discovery to purchase to post-purchase.

Discovery and Planning Phase

In the first stage of the consumer shopping journey, consumers naturally monitor their environment and build a consideration set of items they want to buy. Promotions help consumers refine their consideration set, influencing what they buy and where they shop. They also help trigger purchase and help consumers plan purchases in advance. Here are the stats from the study RetailMeNot did with Google Consumer Surveys:

  • 82 percent of consumers sometimes, frequently or always consider promotions when planning what items to buy.
  • 81 percent sometimes, frequently or always consider promotions when planning where to shop.
  • 91 percent of in-store shoppers and 89 percent of online shoppers said promotions triggered their purchases.
  • 70 percent of consumers planned to use their promotions several hours, days, weeks or more prior to purchase.
  • Of smartphone shoppers, 90 percent use it for pre-shopping activities.

During Purchasing Phase

In this stage of the purchasing process, consumers have the intent to shop and prepare to make a purchase. Preparation activities include learning more about what to buy, how much to pay, where to purchase, and what promotions might be available. Consumers at this stage are still constantly editing their purchasing considerations and promotions help validate price, value, and ultimately the decision to buy.

  • 47 percent of mobile apps used during the purchasing phase are deployed to check out a competing retailer’s price.
  • The way to combat that is by offering promotions of your own because 45 percent of consumers use mobile apps to receive offers and coupons during the same phase.
  • 38.5 percent of consumers report they sometimes, frequently or always remove items from shopping carts and the reasons are mainly cost-related.
  • Promotions help 24 percent of online cart abandoners return to complete a purchase.
  • 55 percent of smartphone users spend more money during their visit when using a promotion.

Post-Purchase Phase

Consumers feel a sense of gratitude toward companies whose promotion they’ve used. Promotions have a strong impact on brand loyalty and the likelihood of future purchases. It also drives incremental revenue.

  • 68 percent of consumers are more likely to be loyal to a brand offering promotions and discounts.
  • 68 percent of consumers are more likely to tell a friend about a company that uses promotions or discounts.
  • 50 percent are more likely to buy a product at full price later.
  • Consumers who shop with a retailer for the first time using RetailMeNot coupons spend 52 percent more over the subsequent six months.
  • RetailMeNot coupon users spend an average of 16 percent more per transaction than non-coupon using consumers.

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