How can retailers retain their customers and stop showrooming from ruining their Christmas?

Recent research from Omnico revealed 10% of consumers have used their smartphones to buy a product from another retailer’s website while in a store, with a further 29% using their smartphone to compare prices.

Omnico chief technology officer Steve Thomas believes showrooming is an inevitable evolution of the retail market and thinks it should be embraced by retailers. “Showrooming is here to stay, whether retailers like it or not. Some will try to stop it, by ignoring consumers’ desire for free wi-fi or even blocking mobile signals, but this is a short-sighted view.

“Instead, showrooming should be embraced, by offering assisted selling and integrating mobile and web channels to offer an omnichannel retail experience.” With incomes still squeezed more people than ever will be looking for a bargain this Christmas. As a result, more consumers will use their phones in store to see if they can get a better deal elsewhere.

But Thomas says there’s more to loyalty than price: “For a consumer, price is very important, but there are many other factors that encourage loyalty to a brand, such as convenience and quality of service.”

Lengthy queues can also provide consumers with the opportunity to search for a bargain. However, with the increasing availability of mobile point of sale units in stores such as Paperchase, queue times should start tumbling, providing retailers with an extra weapon this Christmas.