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Solocal Blog Introduction

August 20, 2014

Welcome to the first post of Solocal Group UK’s blog, designed to offer brands and businesses insight and advice on how to navigate today’s digital landscape and turn online traffic into in-store custom.

Whilst statistics show that 88% of consumers research a product online before buying, converting online searches into in-store sales can often prove challenging for brands, retailers and service providers. As an innovative provider of digital marketing solutions, Solocal Group exists to solve this challenge. Its solutions enable brands and businesses to drastically improve their revenues, by connecting customers with brands along the online to in-store customer journey. It has extensive experience in Europe, supporting over 650,000 local and national advertising customers, and has recently launched Solocal Group UK; a dedicated UK subsidiary, designed to bring Solocal Group’s  expertise to the British market.

Solocal Group UK specialises in multichannel digital marketing, and employs three key tactics to help improve businesses’ revenues:

It takes the time to understand what matters to consumers, meaning that it is able to create excellent campaigns which connect retailers to their customers, yielding fantastic results.

This blog will share Solocal Group’s tips for driving customers from web to store, with the first post looking at the concept of ‘webrooming’, examining the impact online research has on in-store sales, and what retailers can do to capitalise on this growing trend.

How webrooming and omnichannel retail is bringing customers back in-store

August 20, 2014

There has been an undeniable change in people’s buying habits in recent years, with how consumers choose to buy and research products evolving as technology does. Armed with smartphones and tablets, consumers now have access to multiple retail channels throughout the entire customer journey, prompting retailers to adapt to accommodate this.

The extent in which retailers have begun to do this and optimise for mobile can be seen in the IAB Mobile Retail Audit, released in June 2013. The study found that 74% of the top 50 UK retailers had a mobile optimised site, 64% of the retailers have an app, but only 48% have a store locator on their mobile site.

As a result of the increase in online activity, two trends have emerged in the retail industry, which have been dubbed ‘webrooming’ and ‘showrooming’. To define these terms, showrooming is when a customer visits a store to view a product and then makes the purchase online, whereas webrooming refers to the reverse; researching online to then purchase in-store.

Merchant Warehouse recently published a report which demonstrated the growth of webrooming, and highlighted how researching online directly impacted sales in bricks and mortar stores. The study revealed that people tend to research online or on a mobile device before going on to purchase in-store, with 69% of smartphones users aged 18-36 years having practiced webrooming, compared to only 50% who practice showrooming. The findings also show that nearly 80% of local searches on mobile turn into a purchase, with nearly 90% of these purchases being made in-store, highlighting just how important a tool the internet is for driving in-store sales.

This way of thinking can be further supported by a recent report from L2 and Rich Relevance, which examined omnichannel retail tactics and the importance of implementing an omnichannel strategy to take full advantage of webrooming. The study found that by improving the in-store shopping experience and process for the customer as a whole, retailers became able to convert showroomers into webroomers.

As a result of today’s digital age, consumers are beginning to expect omnichannel capabilities, making it essential that suitable cross-channel solutions are in place to meet this need. Being able to offer online ordering with in-store pick up services, easy to navigate store locators, product availability checking or appointment booking, for example, are all tactics retailers can use to drive traffic in-store and increase brand loyalty.

If recent studies have shown us anything, it is that modern technology and cross-channel solutions are empowering the customer, and are an excellent means of providing them with a relatively unlimited amount of information. If used correctly, the omnichannel retail experience is a powerful thing, and one which retailers should utilise as a valuable tool for creating a better customer experience, leading to increased revenue and better customer retention.

Solocal Group’s Horyzon Media appointed by Deezer

July 8, 2014

Solocal Group, market leader in cost effective multichannel marketing, has today announced that its display advertising arm, Horyzon Media, has been appointed by international music streaming service Deezer to support its digital advertising sales across Europe (excluding France). Following a competitive pitch, Horyzon Media secured the exclusive contract to sell display advertising space across Deezer’s desktop, mobile and tablet apps.

With innovative and impactful formats available for purchase, such as the masthead, homepage takeover, sponsored cards, audio break ads or special operations, Deezer offers advertisers a unique and wide range of advertising opportunities. Horyzon Media will draw on its experience working with brands like eBay, Bild, Mappy and Accor Hotels to work with advertisers and media agencies to deliver localised and targeted campaigns to Deezer users.

Deezer is currently the only music streaming service available in more than 180 countries with a global footprint and a local approach for music without boundaries. Thanks to a 50+ editorial team, Deezer offers a service that matches local affinities and tastes.

Deezer in figures:

Quentin Charriaut, International Ad Sales Manager at Deezer, commented: “We’re delighted to partner with Solocal Group’s Horyzon Media to allow both agencies and advertisers to easily benefit from the Deezer advertising solutions across the whole of Europe outside of France. While Deezer is a truly global streaming service, we believe that a successful advertising roll-out strategy requires a local approach.”

Solocal Group aims to help brands and retailers take advantage of the influence digital media has on in-store sales, combining online content, advertising, geolocation and transactional services that connect customers to brands. Its solutions, which include Horyzon Media, Leadformance and Timendo, help approximately 650,000 clients engage with customers and harness the benefits of digital media influence. In doing so, the company helps to drive online traffic in-store through complementary services such as display advertising, store locator and real-time online booking.

“We’re delighted to have been chosen by Deezer to support its digital advertising strategies across Europe,” said Adrien Lepage, Global Sales Director at Horyzon Media. “This popular and widely used platform, combined with our over 10 years’ experience with display, mobile, native, and programmatic advertising, will ensure that brands and agencies will maximise their ad spend and reach local audiences which are most relevant to them.”

PR contact for Solocal Group UK

Elisabeth Goossens / Lucy Mulvin
Liberty Comms

+44 (0)207 751 4444