A new study from RSR Research [download page] indicates that already, almost half of retailers believe that mobile influences consumers’ purchases more than half of the time. And they’re even more confident of mobile’s influence in the years to come: some 44% believe that mobile will in 3 years influence consumers’ purchases at least three-quarters of the time, up from just 9% who currently feel that mobile carries that level of influence. Overall, 75% of the retailers surveyed forecast mobile influencing consumers’ purchases a majority of the time in 3 years, up from 47% this year.
Those aren’t far-fetched figures, either. By mid-year 2013, a comScore report indicated that mobile devices already accounted for a majority share of time spent with online retail sites. In late 2012, a Google study found 2 in 3 respondents using multiple devices to shop online, with almost two-thirds of those purchase journeys beginning on a smartphone.
Mobile’s influence isn’t only online, though. Going back to mid-2012, a Deloitte study revealed that smartphones alone influenced more than 5% of in-store sales. One can only imagine how quickly that figure has risen, given the growth rate of smartphone penetration in the US.
In fact, when RSR surveyed retailers on their mobile strategies, a leading 49% said their purpose was to drive sales to the store, up from 33% in the prior year’s survey. Somewhat fewer – though a notable 41% – are using mobile to provide a new selling channel for existing brands or to launch new products and/or brands.
The adoption of a mobile strategy also brings with it the possibility of deepening engagement with customers. Asked to select the top 3 opportunities from adoption of a mobile strategy, retailers most commonly selected:
About the Data: The RSR online survey was conducted from November 2013 to January 2014, receiving answers from 122 qualified retail respondents. A majority have 2011 revenue of more than than $250 million, and 85% have their headquarters in the USA.
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