Monday, May 21, 2012

Why Mobile Shopping Is Not Mobile Buying.

Steve Smith writes about the recent survey conducted by JWT of 465 people who did engage in mobile shopping activity last holiday and found that people are generally hovering well above the mobile purchase piece. The majority of mobile shoppers (55%) were looking for price information on their bell phones or tablets regardless of the location of the lookup. But interestingly, 44% were consulting directly a family member or friend. That to him is an interesting intersection of the data and conversational functionality of this device.

For all that mobile has evolved as a Web extension -- that task-driven, information-dense platform -- it still vies with the phone’s traditional one-to-one roots. Also high on the list of shopping tasks was getting more information about a product (46%), sharing information with others. Making a purchase, while more substantial a share than one might suspect at 38%, was still well down the list of uses.

Slicing the data by gender, men were more likely to look for more product information and to make purchases than women. In fact, men along with younger users are embracing the device as a platform for making purchases at a significantly higher rate. JWT found that while 56% of women said they had made at least one purchase via their phone during the holiday season, 81% of men had. Surely there is more to this than comfort with technology, and the traditional (perhaps stereotypical) male aversion to the live shopping experience has something to do with this.

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