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Tablet Shopping Grows as Consumers Browse in Bed

One in five Americans will use a tablet by the end of 2012

The explosive growth of tablet usage in the US is fueling the tcommerce market; tablet users are spending more money and time shopping online, according to a new report from eMarketer.

“The good news for retailers is tablet commerce appears to be additive, increasing total revenues by extending shopping hours rather than shifting sales from one channel to the other,” eMarketer notes in the new report, “Tablet Shopping Fuels ‘Couch and Pillow’ Commerce.”

Despite their portable nature, US tablet owners use the device most often at home in the living room and bedroom, according to multiple research studies included in the report. Tablet shopping typically starts to climb at 5pm and peaks at 9pm, at which point nearly 10% of all online shopping sessions originate from iPads, according to RichRelevance.

Retailers interviewed by eMarketer in April and May 2012 reported the same findings.

“We’re seeing really big spikes on nights and weekends—especially Saturdays and Sundays,” Matt Jones, general manager of mobile for Home Depot, told eMarketer in an April 2012 interview.

The full report examines the state of the US tablet commerce market, covering consumer usage patterns and best practices for how retailers can capitalize on the one in five Americans who now use a tablet device. Key Takeaways:

  • Millions of consumers are flocking to tablets, according to eMarketer’s June 2012 forecast.
  • “Couch and pillow” commerce has extended shopping hours for tablet owners.
  • Immersive shopping experiences can differentiate tablets.
  • Many retailers are missing the mark.

“Tablet adoption by consumers and retail marketers is occurring at a record pace—yet the immaturity of the market leaves retailers with big questions about where it will move next,” said eMarketer spokesperson Clark Fredricksen. “eMarketer believes the only way for marketers to have a comprehensive understanding of this market is through analysis of information from multiple research studies.”

eMarketer evaluated hundreds of third-party research findings for the report, eventually selecting data from several vetted sources, including Adobe, Aisle Buyer, Baynote, Compuware, comScore, the e-tailing group, Internet Retailer, Pew Internet & American Life Project, RichRelevance, SteelHouse, Wave Collapse, Zmags and Equation Research, and Nielsen.

eMarketer also conducted interviews with executives at several large retailers and brands, including Sephora, Wal-Mart, Lowe’s, HSN, Gilt Groupe, Travelocity, Zinio, NBCUniversal, Home Depot, Sears, Golf Digest, Media7, Zmags and Cartera.

More than a dozen researchers, analysts, editors and members of eMarketer’s forecasting team helped collect, curate, compare and contextualize the information in this report, including, Catherine Boyle, Tobi Elkin, Chris Keating, Stephanie Kucinskas, Lauren McKay, Martin Utreras, Monica Peart, Nicole Perrin and others.

About eMarketer
eMarketer publishes data, analysis and insights on digital marketing, media and commerce. We do this by gathering information from many sources, filtering it, and putting it into perspective. For more than a decade, leading companies have trusted this approach, and have relied on eMarketer to help them make better business decisions.
www.eMarketer.com

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