Emailers, Unwrap This: Consumers Plan To Use Their Phones, Apps To Shop This Holiday Season

Marketers who have not designed their emails for mobile may be in for trouble this holiday season. 

In the U.S, 44% of consumers plan to shop by mobile. And 28% will use their phones to access the retailer’s app. And globally, 47% expect to do three-quarters or their marketing by smartphone and 48% online, according to a study by Airship in partnership with Sapio Research. 

Mobile apps are growing in popularity, with 42% of Gen Z and 46% of millennials using them more than they did prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as 38% of Gen X and 27% of Boomers. 

In contrast, 14% of Gen Zers, 12% of millennials, 10% of Gen Xers and 8% of Boomers are using less than before.  

Meanwhile, the likelihood of using a retailer’s app in-store ranks only a few percentage points behind visiting a retailer’s website, the study reports.   

“Consumers are clearly developing a preference for mobile apps as the primary destination to save them time and streamline their shopping experiences from in-store wayfinding to click-and-collect and curbside pickup,” states Brett Caine, CEO and president, Airship. 

When shopping in-store, millennials lead in all of these activities: 

  • Visit the retailer’s website — 77%
  • Use the retailers app — 75%
  • Use loyalty cards or coupons stored on your phone — 82%
  • Scan QR code or smart shelf tags for more information, special incentives or to join loyalty/text club — 58%
  • Compare prices (e.g., via Google, Amazon, etc.) — 80%
  • Read user reviews — 75%
  • Buy online and pick up in store, click & collect or curbside — 75%
  • Pay contactlessly at the point of sale/checkout (Apple Pay, Google Wallet, Samsung Pay, PayPal, etc.) — 73% 

This is an opportunity to shoot out an email to offer a discount promotion or an in-store event or treat. 

Airship and Sapio Research surveyed more than 9,143  consumers across the U.S., U.K., France, Germany, Australia, Singapore and India. 





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