Mobile Shoppers & 15-Mile Deal Limit

Back-to-school mobile shoppers want a deal at the store but there’s a limit to how far they will travel for that deal.

While more than a third (39%) of back-to-school shoppers spend more than an hour on their smartphone or tablet planning for their shopping, the majority (77%) are not willing to drive more than 15 miles to get the best price, based on a new survey.

Much of the mobile planning before the shopping trip has to do with making lists and searching for deals, according to the survey of 200 consumers in charge of back-to-school shopping for their families, conducted by Google Consumer Surveys for Thinknear by Telenav. Here’s what they do:

  • 47% -- Make a shopping list
  • 46% -- Look for sales/coupons
  • 21% -- Comparison shop
  • 8% -- Research product reviews
  • 7% -- Research product ideas

While fewer than half (45%) of back-to-school shoppers use their phones or tablets in a store, of those who do, the top use is looking for coupons, which is consistent with other mobile shopping studies. Here are the leading in-store activities done on a phone or tablet, according to the survey:

  • 33% -- Searching for coupons
  • 27% -- Price comparing products
  • 27% -- Looking at store circulars (weekly sales)
  • 27% -- Researching product reviews

While other studies have shown that mobile shoppers would be willing to receive targeted offers based on their location, the Google consumer survey found that more than half (58%) of shoppers don’t want to receive relevant ads while in the store.

Of those who do, coupons lead the list, as we tend to see in every mobile shopping survey.

  • 47% -- Coupons
  • 30% -- Price Comparison
  • 27% -- Product Information
  • 20% -- Product Recommendation
  • 20% -- Store Maps

Research consistently shows that mobile shoppers prefer to shop in physical stores, as I wrote about here recently (89% of Back-to-School, Smartphone-Shopping Moms Looking for Coupons).

The implication for retailers is that they can sway in-store shoppers through their mobile devices, if they offer a deal through them.


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