Shoppers Planning a Merry Mobile Christmas

The Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) and research partner Lightspeed Research, have released the results of the latest Mobile Consumer Briefing, which focuses on European consumers use of mobile to help with their Christmas shopping.
The survey of French, German and UK consumers revealed that 67 per cent of all mobile phone owners expect to use their mobile for their Christmas shopping and organizing their celebrations this year, in ways other than making phone calls. Over a quarter (26%) plan to use their mobile phone to help with their shopping more this year than they did last Christmas (France 16 per cent, Germany 39 per cent and the UK 23 per cent).

25 per cent of respondents intend to use their mobile to search for gift ideas, while 12 per cent plan to use their phone to buy or pay for gifts. The survey also reveals a clear link between the mobile shopping experience and traditional shopping habits, with 52 per cent of those using their phones for Christmas shopping expecting to do so before leaving for stores, and 39 per cent planning to use their phones while travelling to stores to do their Christmas shopping. 10 per cent of those surveyed said they will use their device while in a checkout line.

The survey highlights opportunities for brands and retailers to connect with consumers and make mobile part of the in-store experience. 15 per cent of those using their mobile to help with their Christmas shopping expect to search for the location or directions to a retail outlet Retailers such as Best-Buy and Tesco are among the first to tap into this opportunity, offering the functionality to locate not only stores, but also the location and information of products on shelves.

“The findings from the latest research demonstrate the growing opportunity for European retailers to readdress the mobile channel to target end users,” says Peter A. Johnson, vice president of market intelligence at the MMA, and author of the study. “Consumers are now using their mobiles for a number of shopping-related activities, which marketers need to be aware of when optimising both their mobile and in-store retail experiences.”

Lightspeed Research marketing director Ralph Risk says the findings demonstrate the importance of mobile devices when planning and shopping around the holiday season. “In the same way that 10 years ago, the internet on the desktop changed shopping habits, mobile phones are now leading the way for consumers to shop on the move,” he says. “Marketers, brands and retailers that ignore or underestimate this trend risk missing out on a powerful new marketing opportunity.”