Analysts have by-and-large panned the threat of showrooming, the consumer practice of checking out products at brick-and-mortars and then purchasing them from online vendors.
But a recent report by IBM indicates that the trend might be more detrimental to retailer's bottom lines in 2013 than previously thought.
The IBM Institute for Business Value surveyed 26,000 consumers from all over the globe over and found that, while 80 percent of shoppers make their purchases in-store, 35 percent of those consumers contemplated buying the same item online the next time.
And 9 percent said they were already committed to making their next similar purchase online.
Surprisingly, 7 percent of U.S. consumers said they were habitual showroomers, and most of them tended to be 26 to 34-year-old affluent males, an incredibly coveted segment of the consumer base.
And of this male group, 25 percent said they had intentions of buying the item in-store before they decided to look online, and two-thirds of them ended up purchasing from a multi-channel retailer, a brand with both a physical and online presence.
The study also found that 50 percent of online sales are driven by showrooming and luxury items and consumer electronics are the most commonly showroomed products.