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Ecommerce Growth

Pinterest and the Art of Reverse Showrooming


Bricks and mortar retailers have identified showrooming as a major threat to their business.

Showrooming is where customers browse products in-store, choose what they like, then buy online from a different retailer at a cheaper price.

With smartphones in practically everyone’s pockets, the practice has stirred up a storm in the retail world.

But now bricks-and-mortar retailers are fighting back, with reverse showrooming.

Recently, Vision Critical conducted a study to find out how prevalent the practice of showrooming is. They tracked the online and offline shopping and browsing habits of over 3,000 consumers in the UK, the US and Canada.

Their results on showrooming came as no surprise. Around a quarter (26%) of those who took part in the study regularly engaged in showrooming.

What did come as a surprise, however, was a different phenomenon they uncovered, which has been labelled reverse showrooming.

Reverse showrooming is where consumers browse and discover products online before going to purchase the product in a physical store.

Amazingly, 41% of those who took part in the study were reverse showroomers.

What’s more, they found that 21% of Pinterest users had engaged in reverse showrooming. It’s also the social network where people are most likely to make impulse purchases.

Nearly half (47%) of consumers who bought an item they’d seen on Pinterest said they’d “happened upon” an item and subsequently purchased it. That’s more than on any other social network.

Of those who purchased an item after pinning or liking it on Pinterest, 43% said the act of pinning had influenced their purchasing decision.

What’s more, a quarter (24%) of Pinterest users in the study said they make more purchases because of Pinterest. For Twitter the figure was 16% and for Facebook, 11%.

If you’re looking to show off your wares online, you should get onto Pinterest.

Who can Pinterest work for?

Luxury Shops and Boutiques

Pinterest users aren’t on the lookout for bargains. A quarter (26%) of Pinterest users purchase in specialty stores, compared to around one in ten on Twitter and Facebook. On the flip-side, Pinterest users are less likely to buy at discount stores compared to users of the other social networks.

Stores With Good Looking Products

Pinterest can only really work for you if your products are eye candy. You should ensure your product photos are stunning and sensual. You want Pinteresters to get inside your images and feel you products with their eyes.

Arts, Craft, Food and Decor

Consumers who use Pinterest to help them shop are much more likely to purchase food, drinks, art & crafts and home decoration items. Electronics, not so much. More than eight in ten (83%) Pinterest users are female.

If you sell visually appealing products targeted at the female market, what are you waiting for? Get on over to Pinterest!

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Written by David Masters

Latest posts by David Masters see all

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