Survey Says: Retailers Give a Little, Get a Lot
Sampling works. That bit of news won’t come as a total surprise to retailers or brands, but new research conducted by Harris Interactive suggests that giving away freebies is an investment that pays big dividends, particularly for online merchants.
According to the research commissioned by IDR Marketing Partners, roughly 90 percent of consumers said they are somewhat likely to buy more from a retailer that adds a free gift with a purchase.
"We find great value in adding free gifts in our customer packages," said an unnamed Bluefly.com spokesperson in a statement. "Extra gifts give our customers an incentive to make additional purchases. It’s a strategy we’ve seen work."
Nearly two-thirds of respondents who made a purchase online said they are somewhat likely to share the experience of receiving a free gift with others. Roughly half of those getting a free gift in a store will share the news. Women, the research found, are much more likely to share their experience than men.
"Customers are more loyal to online retailers that make an authentic effort to connect with them," said Doug Guyer, co-founder and president of IDR Marketing Partners. "Receiving a free product that is relevant to the customer creates a ‘surprise and delight moment’ that they not only remember, but share their positive experience with friends and reward the online retailer with additional purchases."
- Study Finds Free Gift with Purchase Drives Increase in Customer Retention, Incremental Sales for Online Retailers – IDR Marketing Partners/Business Wire
How would you explain why free samples from online retailers appear to be more effective than those given away in stores? Which retailers, either online or brick and mortar, do you think are the most effective in using sampling to drive sales?