Bricks drive clicks, finds BL

Published:  09 August, 2017

British Land research reveals symbiotic relationship between physical stores and ecommerce

The research, using data from Connexity Hitwise, shows that when a new store opens, traffic to the retailer’s website from the surrounding postal area increases by 52 per cent on average within six weeks of opening. And digital traffic from the local area then remains around this level, demonstrating that a physical store has a significant, positive and sustained impact on digital interaction with the brand.

The research found that brands with fewer than 30 stores enjoyed the greatest positive impact from store openings, with uplifts in local traffic to their websites of 84 per cent on average, showing that a physical store can make a critical contribution to the online success of expanding brands.

Ben Dimson, head of retail business development for British Land, said: “Blending channels is increasingly common, pure-plays are still moving to physical and click & collect – an increasingly important link between physical and online – is continuing to take ground.”

And Dimson pointed out that BL’s local centres are seeing click & collect usage on average 46 per greater than the national average, proving they are particularly well positioned for omnichannel shopping.

Charles Maudsley, head of retail, leisure & residential for British Land, said: “The research shows that physical stores are an engine of online growth. Consumers choose brands that align to their lifestyle and values: a physical store enables a retailer to demonstrate its brand in action and drive interest online. At the same time, stores enable retailers to respond to evolving shopping habits, market their brand effectively, and deliver products more efficiently.”

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