Micro-moments are critical digital interactions that occur in today’s consumer journey. They are key moments when information is actively sought out, shaping purchase intent regarding a product or service. Last month we dedicated an article to the importance of micro-moments, focusing specifically on the auto industry, a segment that used to rely on in-person, on the lot research. Similarly, the home furnishing industry, which also depended on a hands-on approach to shopping, has seen their consumers’ preferences greatly impacted by micro-moments.
Furniture shopping used to mean heading to a showroom, gaining inspiration from displays, feeling the give of a couch. In today’s tech dependent world, however, consumers are increasingly taking their furniture and décor shopping online, engaging in 4 distinct micro-moments. By controlling the narrative during these particular brand and consumer connections, brand’s can guide the buying process and ultimately gain their consumer’s business.
1. “I need some ideas” moments: At the beginning stages of research, consumers are tapping into their inner interior designer to get a sense of the style they want to achieve in their home. Video content is particularly popular in providing this design inspiration with over 13 million hours of home furnishing videos viewed on YouTube in 2016.
Brands can leverage these moments by creating relevant video content featuring products that speak to various décor types. This will allow consumers to cultivate their style with a brand’s product in mind. With 57% of the searches in this micro-moment occurring on a mobile device, manufacturers must ensure that this content is compatible with smartphones.
2.“What’s best for my space” moments: Here, consumers contemplate which products best express their style and whether these products are available for purchase.
Furnishing brands can best connect with consumers during these micro-moments through providing photographic content. A whopping 80% of shoppers rely on product images when making a purchase decision. Having a mobile focused content strategy can eke out the competition, as the majority of these micro-moments take place on smartphones. To really be ahead of the curve, however, it may be worthwhile to consider the use of Augmented Reality. The world’s largest furniture retailer, IKEA, is already making use of AR to address the “what’s best for my space” moment, allowing consumers to visualize virtual furniture within their real living space through their smartphones.
3.“Am I getting the best value” moments: Like any other industry, consumers want the most for their dollar and they are willing to spend the time to find it. 50% of consumers who conducted research through their mobile device said that promotions and discounts impacted their purchase decisions.
Personalization is key here. Retailers can benefit from customizing deals in relation to a shopper’s previous order history. 57% of home furnishing shoppers using mobile devices appreciate it when retailers send them loyalty program points and coupons.
4. “I want to buy it” moments: Finally, consumers investigate where to purchase their chosen items. Online shopping, even with furniture and décor, is becoming increasingly common, with 47% of shoppers making purchases on their mobile device. In-store research still plays a role, and consumers are using their mobile devices to locate the retailers which carry their preferred products. There has been an 85% growth in mobile searches related to furniture “near me” versus the previous year.
Retailers must ensure their location and product information is easily accessible, including postal code look-ups and real-time inventory. With the online and offline world becoming progressively blurred, brands would also benefit from keeping consistency across both online and in-store content.
Owning each of these micro-moments means being available and offering relevant information that speaks to each of these micro-moment categories. Gaining the consumer’s trust at each stage of their research can help engage shoppers and win their business.
What content do you use to own the different micro-moment categories? Tweet us @stjoseph with your thoughts.