Half of gamers say they wouldn't purchase downloadable in-game content if it wasn't for retail merchandising.
The findings were revealed in a survey by US retail chain GameStop, which says the bulk of its digital content is made up of DLC sales.
A statement about GameStop from research firm Baird read: "A company survey revealed that 50 per cent of buyers indicated they would not have purchased the content without the in-store merchandising.
"These buyers also indicated in a company survey they will buy digital content from GameStop again, due in large part to trade-in credits, loyalty reward points, and the convenience of game discovery.
"Furthermore, if more DLC is made available at new title launches, management thinks they could benefit as they typically have a 50 to 70 per cent share of software sales in the first week of sales."
The news comes following the estimation from Baird that GameStop's sales will reach $1.5bn in 2014.