December 15th, 2017

Fact: Online Consumers Sweat the Small Stuff (and So Should You in 2018)

Author: Eric Lynch
Eric Lynch
Partner & Director of Business Development

consumers sweat the small stuff

In 2016 Google released a study on the number of micro-touchpoints that a car buyer had during a 3 months sales process. They discovered that in settling on a lease users had nearly 900 digital interactions in finding the right vehicle. It might seem like a lot of time visiting a dealership website, but that wasn’t what they were doing.

Every YouTube video, review, and other piece of content online that was related to the search was counted. But, a large ticket item like a car purchase, I suppose it makes sense to do a lot of research.

If you don’t own a car dealership you might be thinking, what does this have to do with me, I sell socks? Well it turns out, this year’s study showed that there’s been a huge rise in consumers sweating these small details on nearly every purchase.

The (Continued) Rise of Mobile Local Search

It’s not a big industry secret that mobile search and mobile buying is up. It’s been up for years and keeps going up. So is shouldn’t surprise you that when you talk about things like footwear (since you’re a sock maker right) the growth is 85% in 2017. What is surprising is that the number of people searching for “where to buy” is up 140% according to Google.

What does this mean for your store? Well, you better have your mapping on point and your inventory management tied to your website. Because shoppers are wanting to know what footwear to buy and where to buy them as they plan their shopping trips.

Simply the Best

It’s not just where to buy, people what to know what to buy as well. Searches in this market looking for “best {insert footwear} for {answer problem} was up 145%. It’s like consumers can’t make decisions, they want you to give them the answers. That’s why people looking for reviews went up 85% again this year.

So if you have an e-commerce store, or product listings, you should probably be attempting to get as many reviews as you possibly can. Product reviews help in SEO, as well as helping the consumer make informed decisions. If you’re not putting reviews on your e-commerce store, you’re probably missing some sales that you’d otherwise be getting.

It REALLY is all Small Stuff

If you think hypothetical socks are small stuff. According to the Google report this year mobile searches for “best salt” were up 375%. Let me repeat: 375% uptick in searches for SALT. There really is no small stuff that online consumers won’t fret about and search until they know everything about the subject.

Who can blame them? We see thousands of ads a day, tons of products reviews online, and there’s more information than at any time in the history of humanity. It can seem overwhelming to anyone shopping for anything, so why not do the research.

So if your business is thinking, “we sell boring widgets (socks), people just buy them, there’s not thought process.” You’re very wrong. Because, with so much information at hand, and so many different products at our disposal every decision starts to feel like a car buying decision. And if you’re able to show why what you do is the best answer to someone’s problem, have the reviews to back it up, and it’s convenient to buy, chances are pretty damn good you’re going to get the sale over your competitors.


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