Live from #OmniShopper15: ‘Leveraging Virtual Store Research for Shopper Decision Trees Analysis’

As choices expand beyond belief it becomes important to
understand the decision making process consumers use to make that final
purchase. In order to do so, Liz Cox showed us how we can create decision trees to follow consumers
through this process.

The Decision tree demonstrates how consumers shop in a
category. They are use strategically (where brands compete, white space
opportunities) and tacticfully (heling shoppers shop).
Consumers are put into a 3D environment online shopping experience
and asked to shop as they would normally. They can pick up and read labels and
make their decisions from there. This combines the attitudinal and behavioral
aspects which are most important to develop the tree.
We all know decisions are made at shelf so it is trivial to
reach consumers at this point. Consumers immerse themselves in this environment
and this allows us to test different factors and manipulate the environment to derive
these factors.
What happens when virtual shelves meet shopping decision
trees? Do shopping behaviors change depending on the specific need? (Self vs.
party, single candy bar that neve makes it home, etc.). Through testing online
it is easy to change these factors and understand consumer tradeoffs. It is
possible to aggregate this data to find trends across decisions. Certain
shelves that are lower may be uncomfortable to reach and thus cause consumers
to stray away from those.
This type of research has many opportunities for use and
will become more important as we try to understand consumers in this evolving

Janel Parker, Market
Research Consultant at SKIM, an international consultancy and marketing
research agency, has a background in Marketing and Psychology from Cornell
University. Her previous experience at a social media agency combined with her
knowledge from SKIM provide for a unique understanding of the relationships
between social media and marketing. She can be reached at