NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwired - Nov 19, 2014) - As retailers gear up for Black Friday and Cyber Monday, shopper-marketing agency Geometry Global shared good news for brick and mortar retail locations. The agency's global "Connected Shopper" study finds that while the line between digital and physical retail outlets has become seamless for the digital shopper, physical stores remain at the heart of the shopper's journey. By tracking online shopping behavior globally, the study reveals how consumers use physical stores on their path to purchase.

Cesar Montes, Chief Intelligence Officer, Geometry Global, stated, "Despite the fact that consumers often buy online, the consumer is not seeing their shopping experience as one or the other, but as a blend of both digital and physical. Order online, pick up in-store or vice versa. With that in mind, Amazon's reported plan to open a New York City location in time for the holidays makes perfect sense. Shoppers are looking for convenience, for good deals, and importantly for good service, and they will go on or offline to get it."

How Internet Users Rely on Physical Stores
Some 65% of Internet users surveyed say they visit physical stores to inform their purchases. 88% of them want to see the product in real life, 65% want to check prices and 45% are looking for special offers. Other reasons why shoppers visit stores include to ask questions about the product seek advice from a salesperson, or simply to make the purchase.

Research revealed a constant across cultures and retail channels: everyone wants a personal touch that offers active listening and advising, flexibility and problem solving.

Mobile Enhances the In-Store Experience
But even in-store, digital's convenience, ease of use, and broad offering plays a critical role. Globally, six out of ten people have used mobile phones or tablets while visiting physical outlets as part of the purchase process, mostly to compare prices, look for product information and take photos of the product. While the use of mobile phones in-store is highest in emerging markets, 36% of shoppers in the U.S. are already using their phones in-store.

Opportunity to Drive Shoppers to Stores via Mobile
Mobile has long been recognized as an emerging opportunity for marketers. However, this study shows it is not being fully leveraged, as 54% of Internet users in the U.S. are not impressed with the mobile offers they have received. Yet, they expressed a strong interest in mobile services that make shopping easier: 43% want apps to check product availability in local stores and another 36% want product locators accessible via mobile. Equally, 43% want to be able to search for product recommendations, while 39% are looking for geo-localized promotions on their phones.

"Mobile marketing can drive shoppers to local stores," Montes said, "and smart brands and retailers should make local product information and offers easily accessible on mobile. There's no more what's right for digital vs. what's right for in-store. All marketing communications need to be fluid, attuned to what shoppers are looking for and enable them to browse and purchase in the way that works best for them."

Study Methodology
Fieldwork was managed by research house TNS and conducted via online panels using Geometry Global's Purchase Decision Journey research methodology. More than 770 interviews (self-administered, CAWI) were completed by Internet users (above the age of 15) in the following 12 countries: Brazil, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Poland, Russia, Spain, UK, and the USA. A total of 9,486 interviews were completed for this comprehensive study.

Please visit to download the "Connected Shopper" report.

Geometry Global is the largest and most geographically complete activation agency of its kind, providing brand marketers with a unique solution: Precision Activation. This proprietary approach focuses on identifying the exact blend of context and content that influences consumer behavior, and transforming creative ideas into effective business growth drivers. With teams in 56 markets, the global network develops highly compelling marketing programs -- informed by data and insights, connecting people with brands at precisely the right times, in the right places, and right ways -- making a measurable difference to our clients' business.

Launched in June 2013 with the merger of G2, OgilvyAction and JWTAction, Geometry Global delivers award-winning creativity and integrated talent across a range of disciplines including Shopper, Relationship, Promotional and Experiential, Trade and Digital Marketing. Geometry Global is a WPP company. (NASDAQ: WPPGY).

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Contact Information:

Kathleen Ruane
DiGennaro Communications