Mobile Holiday Shopping: 60% To Find A Store, 55% Compare Prices, 46% Read Reviews

Mobile payments may not be totally mainstream this holiday season but mobile shopping sure is.

We’re not talking about buying things using a mobile phone, but rather using the smartphone throughout the shopping process, no matter where the final sale takes place.

The majority (78%) of consumers intend to use their smartphones for holiday shopping this year and 72% expect to use their tablets, based on new study.

The uses range from finding where stores are located to scanning barcodes to get more product information, according to the 30th annual Deloitte holiday survey, which comprised a survey of 4,000 U.S. consumers. Deloitte commissioned the study but would not say what company conducted it and did not state how the 4,000 consumers surveyed were selected.

Here’s how consumers plan to use their smartphone in their holiday shopping this year, based on the survey:

  • 60% -- Get store location
  • 55% -- Check/compare prices
  • 50% -- Shop/browse online
  • 46% -- Read reviews
  • 45% -- Get product information
  • 45% -- Get/use discounts, coupons
  • 43% -- Check product availability in a store or website
  • 41% -- Make purchase online
  • 39% -- Access social networks
  • 33% -- Get text messages or exclusive deals from retailers
  • 27% -- Scan product barcodes to find more product information



The Deloitte mega-studies are among my favorites, since they have continually focused on the influence of mobile on the entire sales process rather than focusing on the final purchase, which we know from many studies, ultimately happens in a physical store.

Many studies miss this point, which can effectively mask the impact of mobile on retail sales.

Holiday shoppers this year also are looking for deals. The majority (78%) of consumers will be influenced by coupons or promotional offers and 72% plan to take advantage of free shipping.

Price matching also will be significant this holiday season, with half (51%) of consumers planning to take advantage of it. While mobile price matching using various apps like ShopSavvy, ScanLife or RedLaser can be very quick from a consumer standpoint, not all retailers that agree to match prices make it easy.

For example, a sales associate at BestBuy or Staples can quickly match a price shown on a phone, while a recent personal experience at Target shows that the shopper has to go to a different location than checkout to convince someone to agree to the price match.

An unknowing shopper could wait in a checkout line only to learn this when they reach the cashier, making that line wait a time waster.

In addition to using their smartphones, shoppers have a wide range of ideas on what they would like for in-store technology. Here are the self-help technologies they would like to see this year:

  • 57% -- Price checker
  • 41% -- Self-checkout payment lanes
  • 17% -- Information kiosks
  • 15% -- Retailer’s mobile app
  • 13% -- Mobile payment
  • 13% -- Handheld product scanner
  • 12% -- Electronic shelf labeling
  • 10% -- Video screens demonstrating products
  • 10% -- In-store technology that smartphone can engage
  • 9% -- Digital signage

Whether overall holiday sales are up or down this year, which only time will tell, it is certain that mobile will play an increasing influence in it.

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