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Retail Purchases Greatly Influenced By Smartphones

Posted on 11.03.2013

The influence of smartphones in the retail space is simply undeniable. A recent Acquity Group study of smartphone owners evaluated the importance of price, convenience, product availability, coupons, customer service and loyalty programs while shopping in-store, on the Web and of course on smartphones (and through social media). The research presents some interesting opportunities for retailers. 

The role of smartphones in the in-store shopping experience is quite interesting. Fifty percent of smartphone owners would feel more confident making a major purchase with the ability to research in store; 30 percent would be more likely to browser additional items not on their list, and 20 percent would spend longer in store. 

“Retailers are looking for ways to increase in-store sales, while also pushing online spend in an age of showrooming, but several are eliminating some of the best opportunities to drive a greater amount of in-store revenue,” said Chip Knicker, vice president of eCommerce at Acquity Group. “In-store Wi-Fi not only allows retailers to keep consumers in store longer, making them more likely to purchase, but also helps tie in the consistent user experience across channels that today’s consumers expect.”

The survey essentially reinforces what many retailers already know - that consumers want a shopping experience that brings all of a retailer's digital and in-store elements together. In fact, 46 percent of respondents would purchase more online if there was a more consistent experience across channels. And what specifically will they be looking for? You guessed it - content. 

Seventy-eight percent of respondents (again, smartphone owners) have looked up a retailer's inventory online prior to visiting a physical store, while 59 percent have been influenced to make an in-store purchase decision after browsing product images and information on a smartphone. 

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