Here’s a closer look at webroomers, showroomers, and four tips for retailers who want to win the hearts, minds and purchases of both.

Webroomers and Showroomers – Pros Cons and Conversion Strategies

Webrooming and showrooming are two sides of the same coin.

Webroomers browse and research purchases online before buying at a brick and mortar store, often because they still want to see the item in person before buying but sometimes to avoid paying for shipping or waiting to receive the item.

Showroomers visit local brick and mortars to see, touch, try and sometimes try on items before ultimately buying them online at a lower price. While price may not always be the reason that showrooming leads to online buying, an Accenture report found that discounts were important to the buying decisions of more than nine in ten shoppers who engaged in showrooming.

Both have produced angst for retailers, since time and resources invested in creating and running online stores and physical retail locations go uncompensated if shoppers use their sites and stores for research, browsing and product experience, only to reward a lower-priced competitor with the sale. So much so that some brick and mortar retailers even charge fees for trying on or trying out their equipment, knowing that shoppers are likely going to buy somewhere else.

Retailers who have both online and offline shopping locations and the ability to offer consumers a seamless webrooming and showrooming shopping experience can negate the negative effects of both, provided their pricing is competitive and they can offer free or low-cost fast-delivery shipping. They still might not always win the sale, but by offering an omni-channel shopping experience, they give themselves a better chance.

What motivates Webroomeres and Showroomers to buy?

If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em – or at least meet them where they are. Webrooming and showrooming is standard practice for many shoppers, and it’s not always about price.

Digital shopping gives consumers the ability to make the most of their time online and off. By researching products, stores, prices and availability online before buying at a local store, they can get shopping done more conveniently and efficiently. Some keys for winning the business of shoppers who are webrooming include:

  • Free shipping and same or next day delivery options
  • Quality of graphics high enough that they feel confident about buying online, sight unseen
  • Super-fast, uncomplicated checkout process
  • Painless, convenient and free return policy if something’s not right
  • Real-time or automated marketing encouraging them to buy online or at least buy at the ecommerce site’s brick and mortar location

When it comes to consumers who visit showrooms with the intent to research and buy at a lower cost online (which is sometimes even done while the showroomer is in a physical retail location, right in front of sales staff) it’s important to remember that price objections can be overcome for some. To get the sale in-store before showroomers look for a better deal online, try:

  • Appealing to the shopper’s desire for immediate gratification –“You can own this today!”
  • Adding value that online retailers can’t or won’t, such as free returns, free adjustments, warranties, free or automatic upgrades when new models come out, etc.
  • Price-match guarantees
  • Using limited quantity or limited time offers to appeal to the buyer’s FOMO (fear of missing out)

4 Ways Retailers Can Win Over Webroomers and Showroomers

1. Webroomers and showroomers should be segmented, too.

All shoppers aren’t created – or motivated – equally. While some might be motivated to find the lowest price whether online or in a brick-and-mortar store, consumer shopping behaviors come from a variety of motivators. By discovering those consumers who want convenience, immediate gratification, who fear missing out, who appreciate value as much (or more) than perceived discounts, you can convert many webrooming and/or showrooming shoppers into buyers.

2. Automation and real-time marketing can improve conversions.

We live in a real time marketing world. Hitting shoppers with a real time offer before they leave your website or walk out of your retail store can provide the incentive they need to buy from you.

3. The ROI of Webrooming and showrooming isn’t limited to sales.

Just because a webroomer or showroomer didn’t buy from you, that doesn’t mean you didn’t get a win. Brand awareness, future sales, personal referrals and recommendations can all lead to sales down the road. Don’t skimp on the customer experience, even if you are convinced a shopper is going to buy somewhere else this time.

4. The opportunity to convert a webroomer or showroomer doesn’t end when they leave your store or site.

Give your business the chance to deliver bounce-back offers and create long-term relationships with shoppers. Capture email addresses, get social followers and use retargeting automation to keep the dialogue alive with webrooming and showrooming shoppers long after they leave your store or website.

These customer service stats pave the way for turning point-of-sale customer happiness into increased revenue, repeat visits, positive reviews and new customer referrals.

Turn point-of-sale customer happiness into referrals, reviews and repeat visits. published a list of 22 customer service statistics that got us thinking about how, specifically, these stats can be turned into actionable point-of-sale marketing insights. After all, the point-of-sale is often one of – if not “the” – last moments in a customer’s buying experience. Making it a more positive one can lead to all kinds of actions that you want the customer to take next:

  • Recommending your business to someone they know
  • Posting a positive review about your company
  • Giving your brand a shout out on social media
  • Deciding to come back again soon
  • Feeling good about their decision to do business with you

Customer happiness can lead to all these actions and more. If your point-of-sale marketing strategy is inadequate or non-existent, it’s doing nothing to contribute to customer happiness. Now is the time to take a closer look to see what you can improve.

You might also like4 Ps of Loyalty Marketing that Make Our Customers Love Us

6 Ways to Improve Your Point-of-Sale Marketing Game

  1. Ask and Answer

Think about how hard you work to attract customers. Now imagine being able reach nine new prospects every time you made just one customer happy. Happy customers tell an average of nine people about their experience with a brand. One simple thing that you can do at the point-of-sale is to ask the question: Have we made you happy today?

Conversely, For every one customer who voices a complaint, twenty six other unhappy customers might not even speak up and give you the chance to make things right. When a customer complains they are doing you a favor! They are giving you a chance to improve the customer experience in a way that matters. They are giving you a chance to show that you really do care, that the customer truly is #1 with your company.

Customer happiness can lead to 9 referrals, customer dissatisfaction could cost you 16 potential customers. (American Express)

  1. Upsell and Cross-sell

Making recommendations for comparable items or suggesting add-ons, accessories and so on can produce an immediate return on investment. Why do you think waitstaff are trained to ask if you want dessert even while they are handing you the check? Why do you think ecommerce sites show you “you might also like…” and “customers who purchased this also bought…” items when you add something to your cart or prepare to check out?  Even if your happy customer doesn’t take action right away, you’ve also planted the idea, planting the seed for return visits and future purchases.

You’re 14x more likely to sell to an existing customer than a new one (Marketing Metrics)

  1. Get the Sign Up

Getting that email address should be an essential part of any point-of-sale marketing strategy. That email sign up represents a happy customer giving you permission to:

  • extend offers
  • tell them about events and sales
  • invite them to leave reviews
    • on your website for products/services they would recommend to others
    • on review websites such as Yelp, Google, Facebook and others
  • suggest add-ons and accessories
  • give them more reasons to like your brand
  • encourage them to share your content with friends, family and co-workers
  • invite them to follow you on social media

A 5% increase in retention rate can produce profit increases from 25% to 95%. (Bain & Company)

  1. Roll Out the Red Carpet

Have you stood in your customers’ shoes to know where they experience pain at the point-of-sale? Long queues, clunky processes and a general feeling that they don’t matter to you at the point-of-sale undermines any claims you make about customer service.

The happiest customers spend 140% more annually than the unhappiest customers. (Medallia)

Not only do you have to eliminate unnecessary hurdles at the checkout to make things faster, you also need to go slowly enough to give the customer your full attention and let them take all the time they want.

86% say they’re willing to pay more when the customer experience is better. (American Express)

  1. Say Something, See Something, Do Something

When a customer is gracious enough to say something went wrong in their experience, it’s up to you to see what you can do about it, then do it. Whether their dissatisfaction arose from something that happens to every customer or it was a fluke that just happened to them, whether it’s something that occurred inadvertently or on purpose, when the customer says something, your reaction is everything.

Customer happiness increases 37% when compensated with something of monetary value after a brand makes a mistake. But when the brand adds an actual apology, customer happiness increases 2x as much – to 74%. (Carey School of Business)

  1. Be Human

Are some customers in a hurry? Sure. But even more of them want you to remember that they are people, first, even at the point-of-sale.

“Human service” was ranked more than 2x as high as any other factor (number of channels, rich content, web assistance, social communities) when 9000 consumers ranked the most important aspects of customer support. (Genesys)

Taking time to make a personal connection that has nothing to do with the transaction itself can be a powerfully positive moment at the end of the customer experience.

Bank customers were 6x more likely to feel engaged when they got help quickly, but they were 9x more likely to feel engaged when the bank’s rep offered empathetic service (courteous, willing to help, expressing an understanding of how the customer felt, etc.) (Gallup)


Are you ready for a point-of-sale credit card processing solution that will work with – not against – your efforts to make the customer experience better? We can help! Reach out to us for a free, no-obligation quote for merchant services including payment processing and point-of-sale customer loyalty programs:

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