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Few consumers use augmented reality tools when shopping via mobile, but those who do are finding them extremely useful. In fact, while just 9% of US internet users surveyed by Catapult Marketing in November 2013 used mobile augmented reality tools when shopping for consumer packaged goods (CPG), the majority of respondents (53%) said that augmented reality was very helpful—the No. 1 response.
The number of consumers using augmented reality will likely grow as marketers respond to the positive feedback from those who are using it. In January 2014, Accenture found that “natural user interfaces” such as augmented reality were among the top technologies senior executives worldwide said they would consider as part of their future digital/IT agenda.
Among the mobile tools that CPG shoppers polled by Catapult Marketing were most likely to use, mobile shopping apps were the most helpful, used by 27% and cited by 40% as useful. Interestingly, while 27% used mobile websites, just 24% said they were very helpful when shopping for CPG products—the lowest percentage out of all mobile tools included.
Though all mobile tools in Catapult Marketing’s study saw higher usage in 2013 than in 2012, results from September 2013 polling by Acquity Group indicated that buying consumer products via mobile was not common. Just 18.6% of US smartphone buyers said they frequently purchased household goods on their phones, and 14.0% said they did so for food and CPG. On the other hand, more than half of respondents bought books on their smartphones, and 38.4% frequently purchased clothing and apparel via such a device.
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