Selling in-store still needs a great online pitch

Shop online sign

10 July 2018

Jocelyn Honour / Business Development Manager

Download - Australian Retail Insights

“You don’t have an online customer and an offline customer. You just have a customer.”

You’re a passionate product creator and designer. Your products incorporate the best possible materials for their purpose. They are beautifully crafted, and perform their function flawlessly. Not only that, you have been successful in selling volume in Australia.

Why do you need to enhance your online presence?

1. 98% of buyers now research purchases online

In a recent presentation by Stuart O’Neill, Head of SAP Hybris for Australia/New Zealand, he shared this statistic and showed how important it is to combine the digital and physical worlds of retail to maximise customer engagement. 

If 98% of your potential customers are going online before a purchase –are you maximising your online presence to present engaging information about your product, your story and your value proposition? If I went online now to look for your product, would your passion, your creativity and the reason for me to buy be clear?

This is how to begin to provide a positive customer experience of your product. Understand that your potential customers want to learn about your products, and you, well before you become aware of their interest and they make a purchase. 

2. Reimagine the customer journey

Imagine all the ways a potential consumer might first hear about your product. It might be from a satisfied (or dissatisfied) previous consumer. It could be from a post from a trusted blogger and/or a photo on Instagram. An advertisement or a chat with a friend. From that point, we now know that 98% will go online to look for more information. 

Think about what they will see on social channels and on your website. Does it quickly and simply instil confidence and show your passion? Does your online presence reinforce your brand and its ethos? Is it easy for a consumer to find out where to go to experience your product, and actively make the transition from web-surfer to buyer? 

3. Owning the last mile

Interestingly approximately 90% of end purchases are still made in-store, a channel with which we are familiar. However, the reality is that so often experience in-store is a disappointment. How often have you personally been dissatisfied when your online expectation is not delivered in-store? We all have a story about how frequently store staff have little or no knowledge of their company’s online range and promises. Add to this poor knowledge of the in-store stock, any out of stocks, and whether it can be ordered and supplied another way.

Importantly, if a customer has a question or something does go wrong, a good email customer service offer or live webchat system have been shown to satisfy the need for support. 

The future of retail

Consumers remain interested in new products, interesting retail experiences and the social interactions that go with them. The majority of purchases are still made in-store, however, retailers must now understand that this is only one aspect of a buying experience that is 98% likely to start online. Ensuring that experience is interesting, seamless and positive is essential for future success.

What next? 

If you would like to know more about online consumer behaviour and the current digital experience in Australia and New Zealand, the following links to download research reports from SAP Hybris may be useful:

SAP New Zealand Digital Experience Report 2017

SAP Australian Digital Experience Report 2017

Please also contact your Customer Manager for guidance on the New Zealand Trade and Enterprise services that may help your next steps in your online strategy.

Related reading


Growing competition and demand in Australia's health and organic food markets

26 July 2017

Here are three key takeaways for New Zealand companies looking to enter the Australian health and organic foods.


New retail in China from an e-commerce perspective

15 May 2017

New retail has become a hot topic of conversation in China’s commerce world.


Product-market fit in the Australian market

09 May 2017

When entering the Australian market, New Zealand technology companies need to validate the market and establish a product-market fit before committing themselves any further.


Three reasons e-commerce is essential for your retail strategy

04 May 2017

Today an e-commerce strategy is no longer an option, it’s a fundamental part of your growing business.