L2’s Intelligence Report: Omnichannel Retail examined 3,814 emails from retailers and found that 31% employed a call-to-action that drove consumers in-store (through promotion of an in-store only discount, promotion of online and in-store discount, promotion of in-store events or services, or promotion of in-store pickup). Despite all the options, the overwhelming majority (65%) incentivized consumers to purchase by advertising free shipping. The disparity varied across categories, being the highest in Department Stores and Beauty brands. Ninety-nine percent of Department Store emails promote free shipping vs. 27% that include calls-to-action that drive in-store. And 75% of Beauty brands promote free shipping vs. 21% that drive in-store. The only category where emailed in-store drivers surpassed free shipping offers was the Home category, where most retailers do not provide free shipping as a service.
A survey of consumers reveals that the majority of consumers prefer to purchase in stores, or at least through a hybrid of e-commerce and physical store channels. Seventy-eight percent of consumers have purchased a product in a physical store after researching it online, and over half report in-store pickup as being important or very important when shopping online. The responses suggest retailers should diversify their email CTAs.