NEWS13 November 2018

Smartphones play greater role in shopper journeys

Mobile News North America Retail Technology Trends

US – Mobiles are increasingly viewed as essential shopping tools by US consumers, but take-up of mobile payments remains low, according to research from GfK.

Mobile shopping mcommerce_crop

Almost half of US respondents ( 45%) in the study agreed that their mobile device is ‘quickly becoming’ their ‘most important’ shopping tool – a 16-point increase on the level recorded in 2017 ( 29%).

The proportion of consumers who can envision a future where traditional brick-and-mortar stores don’t play a big role in how they shop has increased by 11 points to 48% in the last year. 

1,000 US consumers were surveyed online as part of GfK’s wider FutureBuy study, which covers 35 countries.

The most popular use of a mobile device while shopping is to compare prices, something 36% of consumers said they have done. Mobiles are also used to gather product information and check reviews ( 30% respectively).

Yet, while 28% of US consumers say they are looking forward to being able to pay for more products using their mobiles in future – almost double that of the level in 2017 –the use of smartphones to make in-store payments remains low, with only 17% of US consumers claiming to have used mobile payments in the past six months.

Consumers in the Asia-Pacific region recorded the highest incidence of mobile payments in the study ( 29% had paid using their mobile in the six months preceding the survey).

Joe Beier, executive vice-president of consumer insights at GfK, said: “While shopping online overall is driven largely by a search for savings, the mobile component is often about research on-the-go. And we should not see traditional retail as somehow pitted against the mobile element; often they work together.”