Each year more Americans are doing their holiday shopping online, but a majority still prefer the in-store experience.
Retailers also want people in their stores because they typically leave with more stuff, so they're pulling out all the stops to lure customers through the doors.
“Certain products are being offered only in the store,” says Ronnie Volkening at the Texas Retailers Association. “A lot of the brick-and-mortar stores are offering a combination where you can shop at that store's online site, but then pick up the item at the store. So you get the best of both worlds.”
Retailers call this “webrooming,” or allowing the customer to see an item online and inviting them to the store to see in-person. Volkening says there are advantages to getting out of the house.
“When you go to the store you have sale associates there to answer your unique questions,” he says. “You also get to touch and see what an item really looks like, rather than what it looks like on a screen.”
Shopping expert Trae Bodge from RetailMeNot.com says the trick for retailers is to cater to both.
“Allowing them to shop in-store and browse, then make their purchase online or vice versa,” says Bodge. “Those are the retailers which are really going to win each year.”
Expert insist some items are just better bought in-store – such as clothing or appliances.