E-mail, Reviews And Apps Most Helpful Digital Tools For Shoppers

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E-mails from brands and retailers, along with product reviews and shopping apps, are the three digital tools with the greatest impact on consumers’ buying decisions, a new study reveals.

In an online poll involving over 10,000 shoppers, Ryan Partnership, a division of Epsilon, asked consumers about their usage of 16 digital shopping tools across 12 retail channels and 12 product categories. The researcher established that e-mail, reviews and apps were the most helpful to users planning to make a purchase online, while daily deal sites and social media were ranked as influential but not that helpful for their buying decisions.

The report, titled “Digital Shopping Tool Impact Study 2013,” also indicated that different tools prompt different behaviour among shoppers. Social tools, for instance, are more likely to make consumers willing to take part in product trials, while e-mail and branded text messages would rather inspire an impulse purchase.

It should be also noted that retailer-owned, mobile tools like e-mail, text and social media are the most likely to be used in-store by shoppers. Both retailer-owned and brand-owned tools also help consumers decide where to shop, suggesting that the two should be used together for achieving optimum results.

In the last couple of years, there has been solid growth in the use of digital tools for shopping and the impact they have on shopping decisions, Kim Finnerty of Ryan Partnership said. As the digital shopper marketing landscape evolves, it’s vital for marketers to pick the right tools in order to ensure the accomplishment of their marketing goals in the most effective way, Finnerty added.