As smartphones become more pervasive, mobile shopping is growing exponentially – and is poised to dwarf desktop shopping in the near future. The 2011 fourth quarter usage of the ShopToIt Mobile app strongly supports this trend. ShopToIt mobile users were 100 times more active than ShopToIt desktop users. Consumer behaviour is clearly changing and we are only at the beginning of the shift.
As first reported in the November edition of the ShopToIt Retailer Report, shoppers no longer have to educate themselves from their desktops before they head to a store. In fact, shoppers are doing quite the opposite by utilizing their mobile devices on-the-go, to find the products they are looking for in a convenient location nearby.
With the internet at their fingertips 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, shoppers no longer consult yellow books to look up retail categories like â€œClothing Storesâ€. Instead, they search for actual products in search engines or specialty apps. These shoppers may have no intention of buying online, but instead are looking to find a store near them, where they can buy the specific product(s) they are looking for.
This change in consumer behaviour represents new challenges, as well as many opportunities, for local retailers. Online marketing has proven to be too costly and competitive for many retailers. However, with the increasingly abundant use of the internet as a medium to drive in-store sales, an emarketing strategy has become essential.
In short, to get found by the mobile shopper local stores need to publish content on the internet. If a retailer does not have the capacity to publish their products on the web, they are effectively excluding themselves from the critical mass of this rapidly growing shopping trend.
Imagine cost-effectively reaching;
- an engaged consumer,
- with buying intent,
- at the point of purchase,
- while they are actively shopping nearby
- for the types of products that you sell.
At Shoptoit.ca, we’re hoping to improve local store and product search in Canada by making it possible for all retailers to create and publish product catalogues and promotional content via their Shoptoit.ca directory listing. Product catalogues can easily be created dynamically by accessing the expansive Shoptoit.ca product database, by manually creating unique product listings, or a combination of the two. Our goal is to allow local retailers to compete with etailers in the online and mobile game, and also provide Canadian consumers with a much improved, comprehensive local and online shopping experience.
How It Works
The ShopToIt Local Stores Program is a free retail directory for Canadian stores, with paid options for additional exposure. With over 68,000 retail locations in the directory at present, many Canadian retailers have already received a leg up on their emarketing strategy â€“ sometimes without even knowing it! We’re trying to reach out to these retailers to let them know they have control over their listing, and the ability to add free content. If you are one of these 68,000 retail locations you may claim your store on our site, add content, and start getting more exposure on our website and mobile app, all at no-charge.
If your store is not listed, please fill out this form and we will add you.
How local stores are found on Shoptoit.ca:
- Online: The ShopToIt Network includes the shopping channels for Yahoo.ca, AOL.ca, Canoe.ca, TheStar.com and several others, as well as the original branded ShopToIt.ca site. This established, 6 year old, bilingual, Canadian comparison shopping network displays more than 2 million shopping pages per month, and with the addition of products to a local store listing, retailers will now be included in online product searches, across the network.
- Google: The association of product data with a local store listing results in indexable pages in Google and other search engines.
- Mobile Web: Google favours mobile-optimized web pages. A free local store directory listing on Shoptoit.ca automatically provides local retailers with an optimized directory listing page in Google.
- Mobile Apps: ShopToIt Mobile provides shoppers on-the-go with a geographically targeted shopping experience. This free app (available for download at the iTunes App Store) provides local store details like phone number, store hours, locations, and detailed product information. ShopToIt mobile shoppers tend to engage with shopping content on their phones 100 times more than web shoppers, and this behavior continues to grow at a rapid pace.
Resource Centre – Related Videos:
How to claim your store on ShopToIt.ca
How the Shoptoit.ca Local Store Program works
How shoppers use ShopToIt Mobile to find local retailers