80 Percent Of Shoppers Say Search Impacts Their CPG Purchase Decisions

Being able to answer users' common queries — made via text or voice — is critical for CPG marketers.

Approximately 80 percent of CPG shoppers say the searches they make on mobile impact their CPG purchase decisions, and more than 60 percent search multiple times during their purchase journey — indicating that text and voice search is of primary importance to CPG marketers, according to research from Think With Google.

This might seem counterintuitive: After all, how many searches can it take to choose, say, a type of toothpaste? But as brand loyalty has declined and consumers’ increased reliance on smartphones has them making an increasing number of “best of” searches, it stands to reason that search heavily influences even the smallest purchase decisions.

“Shoppers looking for consumer packaged goods and who use search are 2X more likely to do their first search on Google than on any other website, including e-commerce retailers. In fact, 75 percent of shoppers said they used search early in their process,” TWG’s blog post states.  And “with all this knowledge at their fingertips, CPG shoppers crave more personalized products. That’s why we’re also seeing upper-funnel mobile queries starting with ‘shampoo for ___’ up by 90 percent and ending with ‘_____ to avoid’ up by 150 percent over the past two years.”

It all adds up to one thing: Searches — and especially upper-funnel queries of this sort — matter to CPG marketers in the last mile more than ever.

The Voice Component

Prioritizing SEO and creating content that can answer users’ common queries is table stakes in 2018. Now, CPG marketers will likely need to ramp up their voice strategies in tandem with their “traditional” search efforts.

As we’ve written previously, with smart speakers living in 20 percent of connected homes and vComm sales forecasted at $40b by 2022, the impending ubiquity of voice is putting the pressure on CPG brands to innovate. While some have tested the waters with Alexa Skills (e.g. Hellman’s, Tide, Oral B), many marketers still ask the question: How does a brand present itself to the consumer in voice-first world?

Discoverability starts with awareness, and while every CPG brand knows exactly what they look like, many will need to make users aware of what they sound like. This means taking steps to build a holistic voice strategy that prioritizes discoverability in the kinds of queries users make when speaking as opposed to typing — as well as thinking about sonic brand identity in general.

After all, when Alexa is your store clerk, brands need to think about their audio packaging on the voice shelf.

Read more about CPG and Amazon Alexa here.

About The Author
Lauryn Chamberlain Lauryn Chamberlain @laurynchamberla

Lauryn Chamberlain is the Associate Editor of A New York City based journalist, she specializes in stories related to retail, dining, hospitality, and travel.