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Consumers Take to Shopping by Smartphone

Android users willing to spend the most on mobile

January 11, 2010

Q3 2009 data from Compete lends support to the hope that 2010 is—finally—the year m-commerce will take off.

Nearly two-fifths of smartphone owners reported having bought something nonmobile over their mobile phone in the past six months, though many still report frustration with mobile site functionality. And the top shopping-related smartphone activities are still research-based.

Shopping-Related Smartphone Activities* of US Smartphone Owners, Q3 2009 (% of respondents)

More than one-half of smartphone users checked out product descriptions, and many looks for reviews, coupons or better prices. About one-third even bought the item on the mobile channel after seeing it in a store. eMarketer senior analyst Jeffrey Grau warned of this danger on the eMarketer blog.

“A retailer’s best defense for maintaining customer loyalty is to develop a mobile offering that allows in-store shoppers access to customer reviews and other product information on its Website,” he advised. “By providing mobile access to their extensive online product information, they help customers feel more comfortable about making a purchase.”

Android users said they would spend the most via mobile, followed by iPhone owners. Smartphone users with Windows, BlackBerry or Palm devices had similar, lower spending thresholds.

Amount that US Smartphone Owners Are Willing to Spend on Products Bought via M-Commerce, by Phone Type, Q3 2009 (% of respondents)

Usage of m-commerce features among smartphone users is higher than among all mobile subscribers. Deloitte found that 15% of US mobile users purchased products via mobile at least occasionally in 2009. The researcher also found that about one-fifth of mobile users planned to use their phone for shopping activities this past holiday season.

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Check out today’s other article, “Harnessing Active Brand Advocates.”


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