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Why & How Merchants & Retailers Should Embrace Showrooming

Showrooming Scurge
Most retailers HATE people showrooming in their stores. That's stupid as it is like trying to hold back the tide. Better to embrace showrooming - the practices of shopping in the world and then buying online for better price.

One way to embrace showrooming occurred to this morning watching Bruno Torturra discuss how easy it is to stream a live event to the web. Torturra is streaming protests, but retailers brave enough to encourage showrooming could use the same tactics to build a powerful Ambassador layer.

The recipe is simple:

1. Create content explaining how to stream live video.

2. Create a community to share your "shopping videos".

3. Provide social rewards (encouragement and features) to filter.

4. Rinse and Repeat

Your customers could help keep your prices in line, alert you to cool merchandising by competitors and a million other near real time benefits. You can't go into something like this halfway.

It's an all or nothing idea and that means listening more than you talk (some sites, brands and companies are better at 2 way communication than others). Early today team Curagami wrote a piece about competing with Amazon (http://sco.lt/58qhn7 ).

Add this "video showrooming army" to that and you get differentaion from the monster. Cool thing is cost of creating such cool and cutting edge competition is minimal (webpage and some serving). I wouldn't host on YouTube unless you were strapped for cash since you want the SEO juice flowing in your site's direction.

Soon retailers will be glad people are in their stores FOR ANY REASON, beat them by embracing showrooming now.

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The New Normal? Showrooming So Use It to Advantage [YES, finally voice of reason]

The New Normal? Showrooming So Use It to Advantage [YES, finally voice of reason] | Ecom Revolution | Scoop.it
Target's not alone in this relatively new attitude about the phenomenon known as showrooming. Shoppers are busy looking for the best deal and more and more are using their smartphones and tablets for showrooming.
Martin (Marty) Smith's insight:

Why We Don't Learn Until The TRUCK Hits Us
Retailers have been funny birds about showrooming. Target removed iPads from their store as if that would solve their "showrooming: problem. Showrooming, using a physical store to test look and feel and then BUY online and not necessarily from that store, is here to stay.

Finally there is post that tells retailers what every Internet marketer already knows - when a trend is inevitable surf it don't fight it.

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How Bricks Can Stop Showrooming By Clicks (Amazon) - Better Retailing

How Bricks Can Stop Showrooming By Clicks (Amazon) - Better Retailing | Ecom Revolution | Scoop.it
As the shopping environment is becoming more complicated, companies will have to negotiate compounding and growing multi-channel and multi-company “value poaching” challenges , illustrated by the following articles: In a 2003 Harvard...
Martin (Marty) Smith's insight:

Friction will need to come OUT of the retail experience for it to stay competitive. Showrooming is more about dissatisfaction with the retail experience as a desire to save. Showrooming is an active protest.

No one showrooms the Apple store because the shopping experience is fun and traditional friction has been removed. Types of retail friction the Apple store destroyed:

* LINES - no lines creates a perception of amazing service.
* Brick and Mortar as classroom.

* Hang Out - all that free WiFi and cool stuff going on.

* Service Concern - Genius Bar resolved this.

* Bad Service - lots of PEOPLE to help who enjoy their jobs.

* No Deals - Apple doesn't let Amazon destroy their brand.


This last bullet is harder than it looks. Since Amazon plays the price arbitrage game better, on one single day a recent speaker at the Raleigh Internet Summit noted Amazon changed a price on a hot product 9 times, creating a "price match" that eliminates the advantage is key.

The problem is Amazon uses its retail arm as lost leader to support profits from its partner network. This means it is willing to sell things, especially very HOT things, at or below cost.


As painful as it sounds to play a match game with an algorithm brick and mortar retailers must either get shelf talker/tags that are live to the net (coming don't kid yourself) OR create an "Amazon Price Match" promotion.

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Why Shoppers Showroom & How To Make MONEY From It [infographic]

Why Shoppers Showroom & How To Make MONEY From It [infographic] | Ecom Revolution | Scoop.it
This infographic from WisePricer digs into the data around showrooming and provides some great tips on how SMBs can fight the trend in store and online. (If you have a brick-and-mortar store, you are probably painfully aware of showrooming.
Martin (Marty) Smith's insight:

Smart web-only merchants WANT showrooming. Let THEM (bricks and mortar) carry costs and you (online merchant) get sales. If I still ran an Ecommerce website there would be Showrooming Tips all over (lol).

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How Kmart Out Showroomed Itself In Hey Whatever Works Ecom Category

How Kmart Out Showroomed Itself In Hey Whatever Works Ecom Category | Ecom Revolution | Scoop.it
Last weekend, I decided to head down to my local Kmart to buy a new slow cooker so that I could make some chili. I found a Hamilton Beach model that looked good, but it was a bit on the pricey side (relatively speaking), with ...
Martin (Marty) Smith's insight:

Great story here of a showrooming customer finding the lowest price in the store he was standing in. The faster brick and mortar get the idea that there is no pricing firewall, thanks to mobile, between bricks and clicks the faster they GET IT and understand how to price in order to win loyalty even if it is goofystupid loyalty as is described here (lol). 

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