UGG: Local Always Trumps E-Commerce

I just had an interesting (and relevant) interaction with my wife — relevant to my work that is šŸ™‚ She was telling me about trying to find UGGs or less expensive UGG competitor Emus for our daughter. We were out shopping yesterday and couldn’t find her size. I made several calls after searches on my mobile phone to find them in nearby stores without success.

Today my wife did the following:

Searched Google for “Emu girls boots” and found this result (click to enlarge):

Emu

The first two ads are pure e-tailers. Tilly’s (the third result) is a chain store but the only local store among the sponsored listings. Recognizing this, she clicked and went to the site — and then to the store locator (the most popular feature on retailer websites according to the e-Tailing Group). She called the nearest local store and asked whether the shoes were in stock in our daughter’s size. Yes. She asked for them to be held and then discussed with me whether she should order them online or go get them.

We talked about her schedule, the cost of gas vs. shipping, etc. But she clearly wanted the instant gratification of picking up and bringing the shoes home today. In this way, my wife is like most shoppers who use the Internet for research and want to get the thing they want today.

If the inventory feeds or proxy information were more widely available this online-offline/multi-channel behavior would become even more widespread. E-tailers beware.

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I just mentioned that I wrote this to my wife and she didn’t agree with my headline. She said “who has time to be running all over the place?” šŸ™‚

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3 Responses to “UGG: Local Always Trumps E-Commerce”

  1. Rich Says:

    To your point Greg, e-commerce is usually associated with National; local search generally is not. The challange in bringing them together? I’d say the roadblock is the technology associated with it. Even with a number of web service companies now targeting the SMB market, e-commerce enabled sites are not a priority, and many are time or cost-prohibitive.

    I went thru a very simular scenerio this past weekend, with Puma sneakers. I ended up buying at pure e-tailer (with free shipping, why not?!).

  2. Dave Says:

    How does local search assist car dealers??

  3. Greg Sterling Says:

    To help consumers find local dealers. But probably better to advertise on car verticals for more qualified leads.

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