Mobile In-Store Activities Primarily Focused on Shopping Logistics

July 19, 2012

This article is included in these additional categories:

Media & Entertainment | Mobile Phone | Retail & E-Commerce | Social Media | Technology

iab-abi-mobile-activities-out-shopping-july2012.pngMobile owners who use their devices on brick-and-mortar shopping trips use them largely for shopping logistics, according to [pdf] a survey commissioned by the IAB and conducted by ABI Research, released in July. For example, a significant proportion of smartphone owners who use their devices in-store report checking prices and availability on the internet (35%), finding product information while in the store (31%), scanning barcodes to check prices and availability in-store (30%), and acquiring and redeeming coupons and offers (23%). The survey questioned device owners who had used their devices while shopping in the previous 3 months on the activities they had performed.

Tablet owners use their devices in-store largely the same way, but in far higher percentages, as data from “Mobile’s Role in the Consumer’s Media Day” reveals.?55% of tablet owners who had used their device in-store checked prices and availability on the internet, 54% performed a location-based search, while many also acquired and redeemed coupons (50%) and scanned barcodes to check prices and availability (46%).

Mobile Users Seek Advice

Both smartphone and tablet users seek advice from friends and relatives about purchases; it is in fact the most common usage by in-store smartphone users, at 37%. While only the seventh-most common use among tablet-toting shoppers, this still translates to 45% of this group.

Device owners access social media while shopping, too. Shoppers use both devices to access social media on their shopping trips (30% among smartphone users, 46% on tablets). Some of that activity relates to their purchases, per new survey findings released by Empathica. Indeed, results from that study indicates that 1 in 10 smartphone owners have written a review while in-store, on either a website or social media platform.

Smartphones Still the On-The-Go Choice

Further data from the IAB report indicates that however broad the gap in percentages between smartphone and tablet activities in-store, device owners are twice as likely to bring a smartphone than a tablet to a store (56% vs. 28%). Smartphones are also the preferred device for looking up information “on the go” (60% vs. 22% for tablets). Smartphone users consider that device to be “mission-critical” for day-to-day activity, with 69% saying that they “never leave home without it”, compared to one-quarter of tablet owners. Indeed, the researchers caution that “mobile” use and “remote” use are different.?70% of tablet users said their devices serve chiefly as entertainment and media hubs, used most commonly at home. This aligns with May 2012 research from InMobi and Mobext, which found that while a high proportion of tablet owners are purchasing from home, 42% of smartphone users purchase on the go.

About the Data: The IAB commissioned ABI Research to conduct the survey behind the “Mobile’s Role in the Consumer’s Media Day” report. For this survey, the sample was balanced at 50% males and 50% females in the US, and aimed for the following typical census age groups: 18-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-64, and 65+. ABI Research surveyed 552 US consumers who use a smartphone at least once a week and use a data service, and 563 US tablet users who also are on their devices at least once a week and utilize data service too.

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