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Mobile Moms: 68% Compare Prices, 59% Look for Coupons, Deals

More mothers are using mobile to shop.

Not necessarily in the store, but pretty much every step along the way.

Mobile moms are using their smartphones to compare prices, look for coupons and deals and receive recommendations, according to a new study.

And mobile shopping activity is up across the board, based on the U.S. Mobile Mom Report by BabyCenter, comprising a survey of 1,000 mothers, two-thirds of whom have children up to 8 years old and a third are expectant women.

As in other studies, this one found a range of uses of smartphones as a resource when looking to buy a new product, with searching for deals near the top of the list. Here’s the range:

  • 68% -- Compare prices
  • 59% -- Find coupons or deals
  • 58% -- Get product/brand recommendations
  • 56% -- Compare features
  • 55% -- Get product ideas
  • 49% -- Decide where to buy

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Even more interesting than the range is the trend over several years. In each category of mobile usage in shopping, there has been growth every year since 2011.

For example, slightly more than a quarter (28%) of moms used their phones to compare prices in 2011, compared to a majority (68%) today. Even in the least active category of using a mobile phone to decide where to buy, the activity has grown from 16% three years ago to about half (49%) today.

While numerous mobile studies show that a large majority of consumers prefer and plan to shop in stores, mobile has forever changed how that shopping occurs.

Mobile moms are using their smartphones to check out retailer websites, research products, read product reviews and look for coupons, according to the BabyCenter study.

Over a previous 30-day period, the survey found that mothers use their phones for many shopping-related activities, indicating there are multiple potential influence points along the path to purchase. Here’s how they used their smartphones over a 30-day period:

  • 68% -- Visited a retailer or shopping site
  • 58% -- Researched a product online
  • 55% -- Read product reviews and recommendations
  • 55% -- Searched for information about product of service
  • 54% -- Used a mobile coupon
  • 53% -- Looked for local stores
  • 51% -- Used a retailer app
  • 49% -- Looked up prices online while shipping at the store
  • 47% -- Bought a product online
  • 41% -- Photographed something being considered
  • 40% -- Price comparison
  • 38% -- Used a deal site
  • 28% -- Scanned a product barcode or QR code

This doesn’t mean that mobile usage is pervasive while shopping in a store, since fewer than half (45%) of mothers use their smartphones often or all the time, according to the study. This also is consistent with other research showing that about half of consumers use their phones in stores and half don’t.

Another interesting tidbit in the study centers around what moms would be comfortable purchasing via smartphones. They would most comfortable buying small items for baby, toys and household supplies. They would be least comfortable purchasing groceries, furniture and household appliances.

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