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Wednesday, Oct. 6, 2004 at 7:21 pm

When Conversion Happens Offline

By Persuasion Architects
October 6th, 2004

Waffling_1Just ran across this on Internet Retailer…

Web research leads to 70% more spending offline than online, new study says

A survey of 3,000 adults found that online research led to $180.7 billion in offline retail sales, 70% more than the $106.5 billion in direct online consumer spending, The Dieringer Group said today in its latest American Interactive Consumer Survey. “The data confirm that the Internet`s role as a consumer product information utility is much larger than its role as a direct selling medium,” says senior consultant Thomas E. Miller. Read More.

I have a confession to make.

I really hate buying online.

But I will tell you what I do love. I love shopping online.

I’m one of those that use the internet as a ‘consumer product information utility’. In the last week alone the internet has influenced my buying decisions on no fewer than 4 significant purchases. I’ve selected a vacuum cleaner online, picked out a waffle iron, bought a broadband phone subscription, and decided on a new external hard drive to backup my 12′ Powerbook.

My kids were online recently picking out halloween costumes that will be purchased at a brick and mortar sometime this weekend.

My wife just decided upon an optometrist online, made her grocery list, and even surfed the website of a gym that she is going to start working out in.

All within the scope of a week, and all without ever dishing out our credit card number online.

During that process we discounted several services and products simply because their websites did not ‘persuade’ us that their products and services were worthwhile.

It makes me wonder how many business are losing selling opps because they aren’t awake to the power of the internet to sell offline as a lead generation tool, or because they don’t take it seriously enough and have built inadequate product centric websites. And according to our Conversion Assessment Director Jenn Weeks, of all the Conversion Assessments we do, only about 20% of them are for lead-generation sites.

How well does your site do in equipping visitors to leave the site and purchase your product or service offline? Have you been one of those that has mis-prioritized the importance of your site because you ‘don’t sell online’? If you are, I can only hope that we aren’t buying from your competitor offline because they made a more persuasive case online

Seems to me in light of this article , lead generation sites have the most to lose (and to gain) from maximizing conversion.

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