"Research online, purchase offline" is a phenomenon often faced by online stores. Customers search for a product on the Internet, read about it, compare prices, get acquainted with opinions, but ultimately purchase this product in a stationery store.
According to The Gemius Report for e-Commerce Poland for 2019, the strongest ROPO effect concerns food products, home equipment, clothing, footwear, as well as cosmetics and perfumes.
If the seller has both an online and a traditional offline store, then he or she already knows the benefits of ROPO.
Though, what if your store only works on the internet? How do you retain customers and use the ROPO effect to your own advantage?
The Internet is a source of information. Here are a few tips on encouraging consumers to choose online shopping:
When customers need detailed information about a product, they usually turn to the Internet search engine first. Let's make sure that your store appears in the search results.
Whether if at all your store appears in the search results and how high its visibility is, that depends on the search engine algorithm. There are about 200 factors that affect the operation of the algorithm. They can be divided into two main groups:
- the popularity of the site on the Internet
- the page content and functionality
When looking for a way to improve your search engine results, consider Google AdWords advertising and positioning.
Take care of opinions
A good idea is to allow customers to leave reviews on the product page. This means not only product reviews, but also about the quality of your service. Recommendations will not only help you build your image, increase credibility, but also have a big impact on your store's position in search results.
As a result, you build trust with a potential customer. There are also portals which are collecting consumer opinions. It is worth ensuring to be present in those, where your target audience will be looking for information on products and services.
Potential customers often visit online stores to see the price range of a given product. So it's worth being competitive and having some insight on the market. Consider the form of promotion through online price comparison websites. It allows you to reach a wider range of customers and ultimately, make your brand more popular.
Make sure your product is presented in the most original form possible. Avoid copying descriptions from the manufacturer's website. Unique content that stands out from the competition can convince the customer to choose your store. Also, do not forget about good quality product photos.
Take advantage of being online
Focus on what are the advantages of an online store over a traditional offline one.
Lower prices, the comfort of shopping in pajamas on the sofa, a large selection of products and variants, access to the store around the clock and during non-working days, and fast delivery anywhere. If the customer has visited your store - encourage them to remain on your site. Remember to make your store responsive and intuitive, so that the customer feels comfortable while navigating through it.
It is always a nice touch to provide the customer with the option of returning or exchanging the purchased product. Also, place clear product warranty information. Make sure you can provide possibly the cheapest and fastest delivery. Moreover, you can offer a discount for newly registered customers, a lower price when multi-buying or a loyalty program.
There is also a phenomenon quite opposite to the one described above. Reverse ROPO is a situation when a customer obtains information about a product in a traditional store, to later make an online purchase.
This is a great opportunity for online marketers. In this case, the most important factor is a competitive price. The Gemius Report for e-Commerce Poland for 2019 indicates the occurrence of inverted ROPO for clothing, footwear, and home equipment.