How to understand multi-channel consumer

According to a survey by Telemetrics and xAd, conducted in early 2013, 50% of online consumers in the United States are planning to purchase using mobile devices. They use smartphones and tablets to get basic information about the product of interest to them. While 46% of consumers use mobile gadgets during the entire purchase process. A little bit more performance came at Google. They found that in 2012, 65% of users began the process of finding the necessary information using a smartphone.

So, buyers began to use tablets and smartphones more often to study product information. However, many of them continue to actively use desktops. This forces marketers to look for ways to attract and convert different types of traffic.

The problem is that the actions of the owner of a smartphone or tablet PC on the sites of sellers differ from the actions of the user of a stationary computer. Mobile users often search for information literally on the go - sitting on a bus or looking at products on shelves in a store. And spend on getting the necessary information seconds, then move to the next stage of the purchase. Ordinary conversion goals, such as adding a product to the cart or clicking on the "place an order" button, do not always work when it comes to mobile traffic.

We wrote that mobile users leave the site if its pages load too long. In addition, owners of smartphones and tablets demonstrate zero tolerance to irrelevant content. Please note that if a potential buyer finds your site uninformative using a mobile device, he will not return to it when he turns on the desktop.

Most potential and real buyers have become multi-channel users who access merchant sites using mobile gadgets as well as stationary computers. Experts marketing company BloomReach from the United States investigated the behavior of such consumers. Having processed the data, they combined potential buyers into five groups:

  1. Users who want to buy the product right now
  2. Discount Hunters
  3. Individual solution seekers
  4. Time killers
  5. Most valuable users

Representatives of these groups behave differently on merchant sites. Understanding the characteristics of their behavior, you can use the most effective ways to attract and convert multi-channel traffic.

Please note that visitors can simultaneously perform actions characteristic of representatives of different groups. In other words, the proposed classification of multichannel users is conditional. However, it helps a lot in practice - knowing the needs of each type of customer, you can offer them relevant information.

What multi-channel users are looking for

So, consumers who use mobile gadgets and desktops to search for information about products are conventionally combined into five groups. Below you will find information on the needs of representatives of each group. Recommendations on attracting and converting traffic will help you to work purposefully with multi-channel users of various types.

1. Users who want to buy the product right now.

Representatives of this group have already studied the product information and want to buy it immediately. They are looking for a seller who has the appropriate product in stock and can deliver it today.

You should regularly update the information on the site in order to effectively interact with representatives of this group. In other words, published information about the availability of goods in stock must correspond to reality at any time.

For example, if a user came to your site for the request "red dress with mother of pearl buttons", he should be able to buy it immediately. At the same time, the price indicated on the website must correspond to reality.

Seeing on the landing page red dress with mother of pearl buttons for 1500 rubles, the user will want to buy it. He will not agree to “the same, only without wings” for 1900 rubles, since he was looking for exactly red and pearl buttons in “Yandex” or Google.

Therefore, make sure that there are always products on the site. Put the appropriate mark on the page if the product is temporarily out of stock. “Hide” the item card if you do not plan to order it from suppliers in the near future.

Users who want to buy a product immediately, usually get to the site using low-frequency specific requests. For example, they are looking for a "Nokia 1100 cell phone" or "Nokian Hakkapeliitta 4 225 / 60R16 tires". Consider this when creating product descriptions.

2. Discount hunters

These buyers use a smartphone or tablet to compare the cost of the selected product in different stores before purchasing. They are very sensitive to the price of the product, and also demonstrate almost zero loyalty to the store brand. In other words, such users can buy printer cartridges from you nine times in a row, and go to competitors offering a 5% discount for the tenth time.

Attempting to compete at the expense of the price will sooner or later ruin you, so do not even try to sell all the goods on the most favorable terms. However, make sure that hunters for discounts always have the opportunity to buy a particular product at a discount. For example, regularly hold promotions, arrange sales, offer individual discounts for regular customers.

If you are selling not only on the Internet, but also offline, check which sites your customers visit using mobile gadgets. This can be done by providing visitors to the store with free Wi-Fi access. Having processed the received information, you can track the closest competitors, compare their prices with yours and take all necessary actions.

3. Buyers looking for customized solutions.

These users return to your site many times. They use a home PC for this, then go to the selected page using a smartphone when they go to work. During business hours, they are again looking for something on your website using a laptop. By their actions, users of this category express a clear intention to buy a certain product. They just refer to customers who need the product "the same, only with mother-of-pearl buttons." In other words, they are sensitive to color, size, price, delivery time and other product characteristics.

Study the behavior of the most demanding users on the site. Try to understand their needs. Offer customers looking for customized solutions relevant content to their needs. Consumer guides, recipes, comparisons - any materials that help you make a choice will appeal to this category of customers.

In addition, customers looking for individual solutions react positively to widgets like "They also buy this product."

4. Time killers

Representatives of this group usually get to your site from search engines. They do not plan to buy anything right now, but are interested in great deals. They have enough time to evaluate the site design, product range, terms of service. Relatively speaking, these buyers simply have nothing to do at the moment, so they are “walking” through virtual shops and stare at the windows.

You can turn some of these idle onlookers into buyers. To do this, offer them the most fashionable news in your industry. Use social networks to follow the fashion. Create landing pages with crackers, confetti and champagne splashes. In short, a landing should be as fashionable as the product itself. Then many time killers will gasp and pick up wallets.

5. Most Valuable Users

These buyers use different devices to get to your site. They are subscribed to news feed updates, Email newsletters and RSS feeds. Naturally, these people are your regular customers and consumers of content. It is easy to understand what exactly they are your VIP-clients.

You do not need to spend time to attract and retain these customers, as they have already become your loyal customers. However, this does not mean that you can relax and wait for the representatives of this group to come again and make you a monthly sales plan for one visit.

On the contrary, spend for these consumers the most part of the working hours. Learn the history of their purchases. Try to understand when the most valuable users buy gifts to loved ones, when they need to buy supplies or order a new technique. Offer these people individual solutions at the right time.


Understanding consumer behavior enhances retailers. For example, Amazon pays special attention to negative user experience on mobile versions of other retailers' websites. Therefore, many owners of tablets and smartphones become Amazon buyers.

In particular, Amazon receives an incredible 59.36% of the total mobile traffic of retailers in the United States, as reported by researchers at Experian. The mobile version of the Wal-Mart site, Amazon’s closest competitor, receives only 8.53% of the traffic. To achieve such results, Amazon invests a significant portion of its revenues in content creation. In particular, in the first quarter of 2013, the company increased spending on technology development and content creation from 6.5% to 7.9% of revenues.

In recent years, marketers have experienced an explosive growth in data on the online behavior of users requiring processing and systematization. The increase in popularity of smartphones and tablets and the associated increase in mobile traffic further complicates the lives of e-commerce professionals. At the same time, users are waiting for one marketer - online retailers should be relevant and convenient for the owners of any gadgets.

The classification of multichannel users offered by BloomReach specialists will help you better understand customer needs. Using the recommendations for working with representatives of different groups of consumers, you will turn many of them into their most valuable customers.

Adaptation of the material Raja De Datta Understanding the Multi-Channel Shopper.

Watch the video: Understanding and measuring consumer engagement in a multi-channel environment - BBC (October 2019).

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