The way consumers use the Internet has evolved, transitioning from Web-based sales to what Forrester calls "Web-influenced sales" -- sales in local stores that are generated through online marketing and research. These Web-influenced offline retail sales are growing by billions of dollars a year.
Technological advances have empowered consumers and given them the ability to make the Internet work for them. Through the process, a new consumer trend has emerged. We now see consumers researching products online and accessing all the reviews and information they need, but then purchasing those products at their local brick-and-mortar stores.
This phenomenon has driven the explosion of commerce 3.0 -- the convergence of offline and online shopping. Driven by technology, customers are once again changing the game -- focusing less on the global online marketplace and more on local neighborhoods.