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E-commerce

Consumers turn to ‘showrooming’ for cheapest price

Australian consumers are increasingly ‘showrooming’ in a bid to get the cheapest price, according to comparison site finder.com.au.

Almost one in three Aussies (31 per cent) – equivalent to 5.9 million – admit to deliberately checking out a product or trying on a garment in store only to look for it online for a cheaper price; otherwise known as ‘showrooming’.

A further 14 per cent have never had the idea, but wish they’d thought of it.

“Just 10 or 15 years ago Aussies were much more limited with where they could shop from. Unless you wanted to negotiate or walk from store to store to compare costs, prices were pretty final and the pool of retailers was more or less confined to our shores,” said Angus Kidman, editor-in-chief at finder.

“Today you can be in a store, trying on a jacket and in the very same spot, you can Google it on your phone for a better price.”

Finder-research-showrooming“Retailers are well aware that some shoppers are wasting their time. In fact Amazon is working on something it calls Physical Store Online Shopping Control – a mechanism which blocks shoppers from visiting online rivals within a store.”

The survey of 2,017 respondents shows 32 per cent prefer to buy in store and rarely shop online, while 16 per cent think showrooming is wrong as it’s unfair to bricks and mortar stores.

Approximately 7 per cent of Aussies confidently buy online without checking the product in a store beforehand. Millennials and Generation Z are the most confident in shopping online without visiting a store first.

Baby Boomers hardly shop online (51 per cent), compared to 30 per cent of Gen X and just 16 per cent of Generation Z.

“Walk into any store and you’re bound to see people taking pictures of items with their smartphones or scanning barcodes, just to make sure they find the exact same item online.”

“In this retail climate businesses might want to consider price-match guarantees or putting in competitive deals to keep consumers spending in their store.”

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