Physical Stores Drive Online Traffic, Brand Awareness

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New York — Opening a physical store leads to a 37 percent gain, on average, in overall traffic to a retailer’s website, according to “The Halo Effect: How Bricks Impact Clicks” study from the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC).

Additionally, new brick-and-mortar locations increase a retailer’s share of web traffic within that market by 27 percent, ICSC reports, which notes web traffic tends to fall when a store closes.

“The click versus bricks debate is over. We have long suspected that there is a direct and positive correlation between having both a physical and a digital presence, and the Halo Effect study confirmed this,” says Tom McGee, ICSC president and CEO. “What we are seeing now is a retail renaissance as both new and established retailers are investing in their stores and reinvigorating their physical presence.”

The study also found that in markets where emerging retailers have opened stores that consumers tend to consider those brands 69 percent of the time, versus 51 percent in general.

“Consumers today want to choose where and when they shop. Retailers that innovate and create a true omnichannel experience, leveraging the strengths of both physical and digital, will thrive,” McGee says.