There are differences between online and offline customers. It’s important to make the distinction between the two as they will have slightly different shopping habits. Customers who come to you store are perhaps looking to see the product for themselves, these are people who really want to know what they’re getting.
Fundamentally your online and offline customers are the same, but when they decide to buy online they’re often looking for something different. How a customer decides to buy a product online is different from the decision making process that goes on when buying from a store.
Comparing The Online And Offline Shopping Experience
The online and offline shopper have different expectations.
When you shop at a store a customer will expect:
- That their purchases will be more secured (in the sense that you see where your money is going).
- The customer gets the product right away.
- Customer service with a real person.
- Familiarity (people are still uncomfortable with online shopping).
- They can test the product before the buy it.
- By shopping at the store they avoid shipping and handling costs.
By shopping online the customer is able to:
- Research their options and products quickly.
- Compare prices with competitors.
- Check customer comments and reviews.
- Tap a global market for hard to find items (they’re not limited by geography).
- The convenience of never leaving their home.
- Saving time and travel expenses to acquire the product.
- 24/7 shopping
- Variety of payment methods.
What The Online Shopper Will Expect From You
Unlike running a real business, an online shopper needs information as to how things will be done. Shopping in real life is self explanatory but online, the possibilities are endless.
When offering a product online you should include:
- An accurate product description.
- Customer reviews, comments and testimonials.
- Various delivery options.
- Various payment options.
- Contact information.
- Information regarding your return policies