Sensory experiences getting shoppers off the couch and buying in-store

Aussie shoppers prefer the experience of shopping at bricks-and-mortar stores over online, according to Mood Media’s latest research.

The study shows 79 per cent of Australians are very or fairly likely to choose a store over online if there is an enjoyable atmosphere such as music, visuals and scent.

“Consistent with our 2017 State of Brick & Mortar study, we found that the physical store remains important to the majority of people around the world, with the experiential element playing a large role in consumers’ decision to choose brick and mortar over e-commerce,” said Scott Moore, global senior vice president of marketing and creative content for Mood Media.

“It also further highlights that brick and mortar businesses have to give consumers a reason to get off the sofa and into the store, and part of that reason lies in providing them an elevated sensorial experience. Brands should look to this report to discover how they can create the kinds of store environments that will convert shoppers into buyers and loyal repeat customers.”

The survey of over 10,000 consumers from 10 countries including Australia, China, UK, US, France, Benelux, Germany and Spain, showed that shoppers responded well to good music, visuals and scent in-store, with positive experiences encouraging repeat visits and longer shopping times. About 76 per cent of respondents said they would be likely to recommend a store to friends and family if there was an enjoyable atmosphere.

“Our research has shown definitively that there is still a demand for bricks-and-mortar shops. Consumers want to enjoy the experience of shopping and this is something that online stores simply cannot offer. Attracting shoppers with an enticing atmosphere and then encouraging purchases with a hands-on experience are key to increasing purchases,” said Steve Hughes, managing director of Mood Media Australia.

Trying different products or services is the biggest driver in making consumers more likely to shop in bricks-and-mortar stores.

Music is the number one factor in improving a shopper’s mood and has an overall positive impact on 85 per cent of shoppers globally. But be careful with the playlist, as the quality of the music played really matters. More than half (57 per cent) of global shoppers will disengage if brands make poor music choices. About 62 per cent of Australians have enjoyed listening to music in-store recently and 45 per cent have stayed in store longer than they would normally do because they’ve enjoyed the music.

“If the high street is to continue to entice shoppers away from online, it must always put the customer first and consider what it is offering the consumer, not just the products it is selling. Consumers aren’t just buying a product when in-store; they’re buying an experience and they are demanding it with their feet. For many, shopping is a form of entertainment and bricks and mortar stores have a real advantage. Done right, shops can see new customers, higher numbers of repeat visits, longer in-store dwell times and more recommendations,” concluded Hughes.

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