Have you ever heard about the ROPO effect? If not, you should definitely read this article.
What is the ROPO effect?
ROPO is an acronym that stands for Research Online, Purchase Offline. It occurs every time a customer researches a product online but then buys it in a brick-and-mortar store. This type of consumer behavior has become more common with the advent of digital technology.
In fact, in the past, customers would typically visit a store, see a product they liked, and then purchase it on the spot. Today, thanks to website, e-commerce, smartphones and apps, they have the ability to research a product online before making a decision to buy it. Why do they do so? There are several reasons. For example, they may want to see and touch a product before they buy it, or they want to take advantage of in-store sales or discounts. And in some cases, they may not trust online retailers enough to make a purchase without seeing the product first.
In any case, customers who engage in ROPO behavior typically conduct extensive research before making a purchase. They may look for technical information, product reviews, price comparisons, coupon codes or discounts, or the nearest local business.
What does this mean for marketing strategies?
Whatever the reason, the ROPO effect is changing the way people shop. And it has implications for both online and offline retailers, who need to adapt their strategies accordingly.
We want to share with you two statistics that, even if they are not fresh, give you an idea of the importance of the ROPO effect,:
- 88% of consumers do online research before buying offline;
- 56% want to see and touch an item before buying it.
We can only imagine how much this trend has strengthened over the years.
However, the ROPO effect presents both challenges and opportunities.
On the one hand, it can be difficult to track ROPO customers since they often begin their customer journey on a third-party website or search engine. On the other hand, understanding the ROPO effect gives new opportunity for reaching more customers, both online and offline.
To take advantage of the ROPO effect, marketers need to focus on creating a seamless phygital customer experience. This means:
- providing customers with all the product information and customer reviews they need to make a purchase, whether they're doing it online or in-store;
- making sure that their products are visible and easily searchable online:
- designing marketing campaigns to reach customers at all stages of their journey, from awareness to consideration to purchase.
At the same time, offline retailers need to ensure that their stores are attractive, organized, and welcoming. They should offer also helpful and knowledgeable sales staff.