The 5 Mobile-Influenced Shopping Trends

Here’s the scoop. With mobile’s ever-increasing influence on the shopping experience, there are three vital questions consumers care about when they’re searching for products from their mobile devices:

1.     Is it carried near me? Consumers want to know if nearby retail locations sell the product they're interested in.
2.     Is it available in store? Consumers want to know if the product they want to buy today is available in a nearby store.
3.     How much does it cost? Consumers want pricing information on products.

Shoppers, armed with mobile devices, can now access a plethora of product and pricing data that impacts their ultimate purchase decision throughout the research and purchase process. Mobile devices have heavily shaped consumer behaviors from “Discovery to Decision.” Now, amidst the transforming mobile landscape, optimization for mobile is necessary to help provide consumers with answers. Understanding consumers and finding ways to satisfy their needs are two endeavors that will never go out of style.

Not convinced? Here are five growing trends that reveal the prominent impact of mobile on today’s savvy shoppers:

1. Mobile is merging local and online. Cloud-based solutions combined with continued improvements in mobile device technology are ushering in new retailing experiences and are blurring the line between online and offline shopping.

In light of these new experiences, consumers now have access to rich product data and reviews. In addition, big data inventory tracking technology, products, and inventory will be tailored to real-time customer demand.

2. Consumers are purpose driven. Mobile drives local shopping and purchases. Seventy-two percent of shoppers surveyed reported that their smartphone was a great tool when shopping at local stores. 67% percent indicated that they research prior to a store visit, and 72% said they check for in-stock, store inventory before shopping. Consumers’ mobile research is directly tied to their store visits and shopping activity.

Meanwhile, shoppers’ use of mobile devices continues to skyrocket.

3. Mobile shoppers move from intent to purchase within hours. As consumers become more comfortable with smartphone-aided shopping, the purchase process from discovery to decision has become shorter. They’re looking up store and prouct information on the way to the store. When asked how they use their smartphone to research purchases, 44% of consumers reported that they make a purchase within the hour of conducting mobile research. With consumers spending less time prior to purchase, retailers must take note: Consumers need quick, fast, and accurate mobile access to the data that will lead from research to purchase.

4.  Consumer-centric conveniences drive in-store purchases across devices.  Online shopping experiences that offer strong cross-channel conveniences have a higher likelihood of securing a consumer's purchase. The top four cross-channel conveniences ranked by consumers are coupon or promo codes, price-matching guarantees, store location, and ability to check inventory at nearby stores via mobile devices.

5. Mobile consumers demand both product and store information. The more information and knowledge consumers receive during their mobile-driven product research, the more confident they feel about making the right purchase, therefore driving more purchases. Shoppers find it crucial to understand the total cost of the product, be able to secure all product information, search their desired item and secure customer reviews.

Mobile local shopping trends are heavily impacting mobile strategies and design. Shoppers now demand optimized mobile platforms to satisfy their immediate needs and find information on products near them, in-store availability, pricing and more. We will see greater analysis of consumer behavior, engagement and interaction via digital channels to further improve and personalize shopping experiences across channels.

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