Intercept V. Online


4D Shopper and 4D Shopper Plus can be run as an intercept or as an online study Рthere are advantages and disadvantages to each.


We typically use 30 different sites spread across the US for a mall-intercept study. This means we can run 150 shoppers a day. That means most tests run with just a few days of fieldwork.

A typical study takes 15-20 minutes, including training on how to move around the store and the shelves and how to interact with products.

This is a long time for shoppers to pay attention; we haven’t had a problem with this in an intercept environment – the time goes by quickly and the gamification aspect is engaging.


Online has the singular advantage of lower recruiting costs – often less than 20% of an intercept cost.

Most VR systems require browser plug-ins to make the 3D features work. This has two downsides:

  • Browsers are becoming more and more restrictive about which plug-ins they permit. This means you may need to move potential recruits to another browser to participate – you lose a lot of shoppers because of this.
  • Participants are becoming more and more reluctant to download a plug-in, even though they don’t collect any data or interact with any other program on their system.
  • The implication is that your incidence rate can easily be cut in half

4D Shopper Plus is browser independent and does not require a plug-in to work!