There was a time for consumers when the process of becoming aware of a product or service, understanding whether or not it was something you wanted or needed, and then actually making the purchase were separate and distinct activities. Then the internet happened, and now those lines and distinctions have been blurred or erased.
To say that web and mobile technology has changed things is an understatement. What were once discrete activities have now converged into a single experience for consumers. With that change has also come a shift in power. In the past that power was shared by the businesses and consumers alike.