Tablets Convert Consumers More Often Than Smartphones

ConsumerReports-on-Tablet-ATablets have become the mobile device choice for consumers shopping online. Those using tablets treat them like a PC, comparing products and making purchases.

In fact, online shoppers are three times more likely to make a purchase on a tablet compared with a smartphone, according to The State of Mobile Benchmark-Q2 3013.

While consumers might use smartphones to quickly check a reference, such as price checks or finding store locations, the conversion more often occurs on a tablet. But the preferences for tablets versus smartphones vary depending on the type of site they are visiting, either from a search engine or app.

Retail Web sites get the most tablet traffic, followed by auto and travel and hospitality sites. While users on tablets prefer shopping on retail and e-commerce sites, consumers on smartphones tend to frequent telecom and media sites more often.

Still, iOS remains the operating system used most frequently. It accounts for 49% of smartphone searches or browsing in the U.S., followed by Android at 45%. During the past 12 months, Research in Motion (RIM) declined from 5% to 1% share of visits in the U.S., while Windows maintained its 1% share.

Android and iOS account for nearly 90% of smartphone searches in all six countries that Adobe observed. RIM and Symbian maintain their strongest footholds in the U.K. and China. Android share is largest in Japan. iOS leads in the U.S., U.K., and France.

Interestingly, smartphone traffic is similar between the U.S. and the U.K., but tablet traffic is much higher in the U.K. In the U.K., Internet searchers are more likely to browse through both tablets and smartphones than their German and French counterparts. In Japan and China, smartphones remain more popular for searching the Web.

In Canada, 8.7% search on tablets versus 6.8% on smartphones -- compared to 9.1% on tablets versus 7.4% on smartphones in the U.S., followed by 12.2% on tablets and 7.4% on smartphones in the U.K. Germany is at 5.7% and 4.3%, followed by France at 6.1% and 3.5%, respectively.

2 comments about "Tablets Convert Consumers More Often Than Smartphones".
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  1. Todd Sherman from Point Inside, April 25, 2013 at 9:37 a.m.

    The title of this article is wildly misleading in a number of ways.

    Smartphones are often used to research, etc., including in-store activities, that lead to purchases inside the physical store. To say that "Tablets convert consumers more often than smartphones" is akin to saying "because we can't easily track or measure the impact of smartphones on consumer behavior we'll assume it's not happening" and promotes a misunderstanding of how these devices are really used.

    While tablets have similar characteristics as smartphones (you can hold them in one hand, similar OS's...) they are used very differently by consumers.

    Here's a test you can do yourself: when was the last time you saw a jogger with a tablet? Or a customer in a store using their tablet? (Make up your own scenarios where someone is actually MOBILE and using a tablet...). Yes, tablets are easier to carry around than traditional PCs but they are still used more like traditional PCs, including commerce, than a true mobile device.

    It's high time the analysts and experts in mobile stop comparing tablets and smartphones like they are the same device. The categorization should be tablets and PCs together and have smartphones stand on their own.

  2. Pete Austin from Fresh Relevance, April 26, 2013 at 4:57 a.m.

    @Todd, "Those using tablets treat them like a PC"

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