With the proliferation of smartphones and mobile devices, we all recognize that shoppers can now get vast amounts of information wherever they are, whenever they want it. Now, as marketers, we can spend our work hours and brain cells on how to effectively navigate this complex online landscape.
But we at ShopScape suspect that few of us have stopped to consider the possible side effects of so much information, especially for (let’s face it) items with less than earth-shaking importance. Sure, you want lots of input for an expensive new car purchase or when moving up to a cutting edge piece of technology. But what about an everyday “medium-ticket” purchase like a set of bedsheets?
In the old days, a shopper would have checked the options at a local department store, thought about them for a bit, maybe looked at other sets at another store or two, and finally made a purchase. Now it’s second nature to check the web, research the price at different stores, read thread count reviews, check to see if the sheets are on sale anywhere, scan the bar code in the store to see where else they’re sold, and Google coupon codes, etc. Just writing that sentence was exhausting—which leads us to wonder if too much information may sometimes have a counter-effect, confusing or turning off the very customers we’ve sought to engage.
What we think it means: Information fatigue could offer an opportunity to stand out by making life easier for your customers. For example, by simplifying product selection or by giving them all the product information they want (including reviews and ratings) right on your site or in your store—so they don’t feel the need for extensive research elsewhere.