Savvy shoppers now make over nine visits to a retailer’s site before deciding to buy, Rakuten Marketing finds

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Today, Rakuten Marketing attribution data reveals shoppers are no longer making impulse purchases, with the average customer making 9.5 visits to a brand before buying. This is an increase of seven visits since January 2011, when shoppers visited just 2.5 times before converting. With a recent survey from Deloitte showing that 95% of online sales are incremental to store sales, there is a clear importance in the industry today of providing an omnichannel experience to customers.

Seth Richardson, CTO at Rakuten Marketing, said “Consumers’ confidence in the web means they move around very quickly between devices, channels and websites. They know what they want and understand how to find it, so are making more comparisons between retailers before taking the decision to buy.”

Over the last four years, the average number of channels used before conversion has also risen from 1.25 in January 2010 to 3.25 in 2014. Mirroring this trend, last Christmas John Lewis found that 1 in 3 of its click and collect customers purchased an additional item in store, and Tesco saw that 40% of grocery orders were created using more than one device. Clearly, consumers are no longer shopping just in store or only online.

Richardson said: “Marketers now know that focusing on a single channel means missing the ‘modern shopper’ at crucial stages of the purchase journey. Certainly, there are operational challenges to achieve an omnichannel approach, but the real challenge is to accurately measure performance.”

“Without effective measurement in place, brands can’t fully understand which of their campaigns are really working, and therefore how to spend their budgets wisely. With the right tools in place, marketers have the power to consolidate and clarify data, improving campaigns continually based on real-time responses.”