High street retailers are gaining more visitors to their websites than their online-only competitors, a new study shows.
The research and analysis gurus at Hitwise compared the 100 largest online high street stores, like Argos and M&S, with the 100 biggest web-only retailers, which include Play.com and the mighty Amazon.
According to the study, these high street retailers received a fifth more UK visitors last month than those companies operating only online.
Interesting stuff. More and more people are turning to the web to shop, but many seem to prefer the brands and shops they are used to in the real world.
I think this comes down to visibility – Marks and Spencer, Argos and other high street brands are put in front of consumers every day.
Their very presence in every town centre is an advert, it builds trust and recognition.
In order to compete, online businesses must increase their own visibility and this may not be as hard as it sounds.
As more people are spending time on the internet, web retailers can use pay-per-click, organic search engine optimisation and other web marketing tactics to increase consumer awareness.
If they market themselves carefully and enthusiastically, they can compete without a physical presence.