The Grapevine

Smartphones: Good and Evil for Retail Wine Shops, Part 2

June 11th, 2013

Last week we talked about the downside of the mobile revolution and how it can negatively affect your wine shop. This week, let’s talk about how mobile can be a boon instead of a bear. [level-members]

First, let’s face the facts: smartphones are here and they’re not going away. 79% of smartphone owners use their phones to assist them when they shop. 8 in 10 of them use their phones to help them shop while they’re in retail stores.

Their use is a mix of product research, including seeking professional reviews and opinions from social networks, and price comparison.

At first glance, that might seem like bad news: they’re just going to go down the block to get something cheaper, right?. Well, maybe. But there’s also evidence that shoppers who use mobile while shopping buy more. (Again, from the Google research cited above.)

The important point is not to assume that your customers are “showrooming” – using your shop as a showroom so they can go home and order online cheaper. There’s little motivation for that, unlike with clothing or electronics, where many buyers want to see an item in person before committing to it online.

Beyond that, you can use mobile to your advantage. Geo-targeting, for example, is a way for you to target your customers by where they are. This is still a bit of a touchy area. Plenty of consumers still find it “creepy” for retailers to seemingly be following them around as they browse on their computer. Even more of them will find it creepy to feel they’re being followed as they shop in the real world.

Still it’s worth keeping your eye on technologies like this. As this Luxury Daily article concludes, “… retailers need to use technology in a new way to create a compelling customer experience and distinguish themselves from the competition.”

It’s all about a great customer experience and standing out from the crowd.