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Digital influence to drive in-store retail sales 

Navigating the New Digital Divide : Deloitte India Report

• Digital influences INR 60,000 Cr. of in-store retail sales in India • Digital influence is quite similar across age groups, and not just the younger population • Electronics and Apparel hold the highest digital influence • Digitally influenced consumers convert more and spend more compared to ‘pure physical’ shoppers

New Delhi, June 22, 2015: India is undergoing a digital revolution catalyzed by proliferation of smartphones and growing digital savviness of consumers. With an aim to understand how digital influences retail not in e-Commerce but in the physical in-store purchases, Deloitte in India today released a report titled “Navigating the New Digital Divide 2015 - Key Imperatives for Indian Retailers”.

The report is based on a survey of 2000+ urban respondents (internet users and regular shoppers across over 50 Tier 1, 2, 3 cities), and findings mapped to the Indian urban macro-economic realities to derive statistically reliable and insightful metrics for retailers. Digital devices considered include mobile, laptops and desktop computers, tablets, and in-store digital devices.

According to the report, digital currently influences 21 per cent i.e. INR 60,000 crore of the over INR 280,000 crore of in-store organized retail sales in India. The mobile influence factor is as high as 18 percent, with smartphones being the devices of choice for accessing information while on-the-go or in-store. For products, apparel and electronics hold the highest digital influence.

The Big Impact

A great digital experience has the biggest impact before and during the shopping experience. It can make all the difference between converting to a sale or not. As per the survey, digitally influenced shoppers convert more often - conversion rate of shoppers who use a digital touch-point is more than 40 per cent higher than the non-digitally influenced shoppers. These shoppers not only convert more often, but also spend more. More than 66 per cent of consumers spend more as a result of using digital with a majority spending at least 25 per cent more than they had intended. Interestingly, discount/coupon found on digital properties induced the initial purchase, but shopper ended up spending more overall.

The impact of Social Media platforms on shopping is also quite high and growing by the day. These platforms act as valuable source for retailers to not only make people aware of their offerings but also to learn about customer feedback and trends. Key reasons for using social media during shopping include validation from personal network, awareness and product research

Changing Preferences


Given the right digital infrastructure such as shopping apps for end-to-end shopping needs, in-store self-service kiosks, etc., digitally influenced shoppers are likely to use digital almost 100 per cent of the time. In a store, over 70 per cent of shoppers would prefer to use either their own device or an interactive in-store digital device, compared to a sales associate for their shopping-related needs. Also, 96 per cent would prefer to use a digital device or touch-point to make a payment in-store, with Mobile Wallet being the most preferred digital payment option.

Furthermore, shoppers are increasingly looking for greater flexibility in buying and receiving delivery of products. About 37 per cent respondents expressed willingness to try the Buy-Online-Pick-Up-in-Store model, which gives them the option of making a purchase online and later collecting the products from the store as per their convenience.

Key Imperatives for Retailers
Digital is no more a choice but an imperative for retailers in India. “Customers want a coherent shopping experience along their path to purchase,” says Rohit Bhatiani, Director, Deloitte in India. “Retailers need to build a meaningful digital presence and build a roadmap towards seamless integration of physical and digital assets. The interactions between customers and retailers should not be viewed as discrete, but as a holistic experience. It becomes important that retailers recognize the impact on the overall business and not look at digital initiatives as a channel-spend subset.”

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