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Definition - What does Webrooming mean?

Webrooming is a slang for the consumer practice of researching products online before buying them in a physical store.

The term is often used to contrast with another consumer practice called "showrooming," wherein shoppers first try out the products they want in a physical store before buying them online. Webrooming is the opposite - shoppers first research the products online before buying them in a physical store.

Techopedia explains Webrooming

Webrooming and showrooming are considered subcategories of e-commerce. These trends are studied by marketers partly to determine their effect on physical retailers. In the past, it was believed that showrooming was going to have a negative effect on physical retailers because consumers could just buy everything online. The phenomenon of webrooming, however, shows otherwise, suggesting that physical retailers still have a role to play in the future of commerce.

In studying the trends of showrooming and webrooming, marketing experts give the following reasons why consumers do webrooming:
  • It allows them to learn more about the products before buying them.
  • It allows easier returns.
  • It has no shipping cost.
  • It supports local businesses.
Some research studies have shown that webrooming is a fundamental consumer practice that is going to help support physical retailers for years to come.

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