Study Finds Free Gift with Purchase Drives Increase in Customer Retention, Incremental Sales for Online Retailers

Americans three times more likely to buy more often at a shopping site when receiving a free gift, two-thirds more likely to share experience with others

BERWYN, Pa.--()--New survey findings from Harris Interactive and commissioned by IDR Marketing Partners (IDR), the leader in e-Commerce marketing and pioneer of product sampling, reveals about two in five Americans are very-to-extremely likely to purchase more often from a shopping Web site after receiving a free gift and about 40 percent of Americans are somewhat likely to. The survey found that online retailers benefit from including an unexpected offer or free gift sample with each customer order. Americans are more likely to purchase regularly from the online retailer, as well as share their positive experience online and offline.

IDR works with more than 510 online retailers including Bluefly.com, BedBathandBeyond.com, BeyondTheRack.com, Yoox.com, QCI Direct, HauteLook.com and many others. The company provides targeted free products and product samples from well-known brands to online retailers that they then include in online orders. The free gift serves to surprise and delight customers, fostering a closer connection between the retailer and customer, which as a result, encourages recurring engagement.

“We find great value in adding free gifts in our customer packages,” said a Bluefly.com spokesperson. “Extra gifts give our customers an incentive to make additional purchases. It’s a strategy we’ve seen work.”

Additional survey findings support both the online and offline impact of product samples:

  • Consumers Come Back for More: Almost 90 percent of free gift receivers indicate that they are at least somewhat likely to buy more frequently from an online retailer after receiving a free gift.
  • Shoppers React Favorably to Something Extra: Sixty-five percent of free gift receivers say they are at least somewhat likely to share their experience with others online, about half offline.
  • Online Retailers Urged to Include Free Gift: Online retailers see value in including a free gift with customer orders, though less than half do.
  • Women More Likely to Share: Of the four out of five Americans that are at least somewhat likely to share their experience with others offline about a shopping site after receiving a free gift with purchase, women are found to be significantly more likely to share their positive 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. The experience creates the ultimate win-win scenario for the online retailer and their customers.”

With online sales estimated to increase to $429 billion by 2015, e-commerce is in a state of growth. Online retailers have a chance to grab on to that spend by tapping a well-refined marketing technique to include a free gift with purchase. For more information about IDR Marketing Partners and this survey, please visit www.idrmp.com.

Survey Methodology

This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of IDR Marketing Partners from October 2-4, 2012 among 2,516 adults ages 18 and over. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact Jennifer Smelyanets at Jennifer.smelyanets@horngroup.com.

About IDR Marketing Partners

IDR Marketing Partners connects online retailers with top tier brands to include a complimentary, synergistic product or free gift sample in each and every order shipped to customers. As a result of the free gift with purchase that IDR provides to online retailers, customers are more likely to return to a shopping Web site and share their positive experience both online and offline. The leading e-Commerce marketing company has an unsurpassed retail network that reaches more than 42 million targeted consumers in-home every month, including over 500 online retailers, from the top names to strong niche players and targets 41 lifestyle and demographic segments. For more information please visit www.IDRmp.com.

Contacts

For IDR Marketing Partners
Horn.
Jennifer Smelyanets , +1 646-202-9756
Jennifer.Smelyanets@horngroup.com

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Contacts

For IDR Marketing Partners
Horn.
Jennifer Smelyanets , +1 646-202-9756
Jennifer.Smelyanets@horngroup.com