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BizReport : Ecommerce : October 01, 2013

IBM Tealeaf survey reveals how businesses connect the physical with the digital

What is the most-used method used by businesses to integrate the physical and digital worlds? And why is enabling a seamless experience across channels so important to businesses today? The answers can be found in a mini whitepaper released today by IBM Tealeaf.

by Helen Leggatt

Consumers are interacting with brands via an increasing variety of channels such as mobile, social media and email. The physical channel still has its place, but consumers are increasingly demanding it be absorbed into a seamless experience across all the channels they use.

One of the questions posed in IBM Tealeaf's global survey of 500 e-commerce and e-business professionals (conducted by Econsultancy) was how they bring together the physical and the digital. By far the most-used is including physical store locations, opening hours and contact details on a website, used by 63% of respondents.

Maintaining a presence on social media is used by 38% of businesses and 31% employ local and mobile search strategies. Just over a quarter (28%) link the physical to mobile via QR Codes and 26% use coupons and vouchers.

According to the mini whitepaper 'Delivery a Seamless Experience Across Every Channel', "it is increasingly important for businesses to understand the different channels customers are using, as well as the ways in which they can integrate these channels to provide the best overall customer experience".

The paper cites reserve and collect, in-store Wi-Fi and click to call as ways in which businesses can enhance and expand the cross-channel experience yet only 18%, 17% and 23% respectively are using them.

It's interesting to note how few businesses in IBM Tealeaf's survey use click to call when recent research from Google reveals that 70% of mobile searchers engage with it. And, found Google, the majority (75%) of calls from click to call last longer than half a minute - most averaging six minutes - suggesting mobile searchers are after in-depth information.

In fact, most calls from click to call are from consumers who are all but ready to do business. The research found that click to call was most important to mobile searchers who were in the process of researching (52%) or ready to buy (61%).

Image via Shutterstock

Tags: customer experience, digital experience, e-business, e-commerce, in-store technology, multi-channel marketing, survey

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