Retailers can only fully understand mobile shoppers when they know what device is being used, according to a report from affiliate marketing specialists Tradedoubler. The company’s new Mobile Devices & Behaviour study, which contacted more than 2,000 smartphone users in Germany, Sweden, France and the UK, discovered that mobile shopping behaviour can closely be linked with the consumer’s chosen device and operating system.
People with an iPhone were most likely to use the mobile web every day. In fact, 80% of iPhone users accessed the mobile web daily while 75% of Apple iPhone owners used apps every day. 28% searched for vouchers and coupons at least once a week; 25% searched for vouchers in-store and 22% received location-based special offers. Price comparison apps were used by 21% of iPhone owners, while 23% had daily deals installed on their iPhones and 20% used their phone as a loyalty card.
When it came to buying, 46% of iPhone owners researched products weekly and 20% made mobile purchases at least once a week.
BlackBerry owners were most likely to describe mobile commerce as a frustrating experience but still came second to iPhone users in terms of regularly researching products (31% via mobile at least weekly) and purchasing (13% at least weekly).
This group of smartphone owners appeared to be the least-important target for retailers, with only 10% of them purchasing weekly via mobile. They were much more likely to do their shopping research via the web browser rather than an app; 19% on a browser versus 9% using apps.
Almost a quarter of smartphone owners - 23% - already own a tablet, with a further 36% expecting to buy one in the next 12 months. 35% of tablet owners said the device was a preferred means of purchasing products, with 18% of owners having spent more than £500 in one transaction.
Dan Cohen, Market Unit Leader at Tradedoubler, said “Our research shows that shoppers’ paths to purchase on mobile can resemble a maze. So understanding how different mobile devices and operating systems influence and drive consumer behaviour – from the initial research through to the point of purchase - is vital. For example, unlike experienced iPhone users, many Android owners are experiencing a smartphone for the first time. However, given the platform’s growing share, it will become increasingly important to engage Android owners effectively.”
“The varying patterns of behaviour across different devices revealed by our research leave marketers with two options when it comes to developing a mobile strategy for performance marketing: target solutions at the groups who are most engaged with shopping on their devices, or develop a strategy that can work across devices and channels by side-stepping the limitations and frustrations of certain platforms. We believe that by targeting investment carefully, brands and retailers may be able to achieve both.”
Overall, the report recommends that brands and retailers should adopt a seamless approach across online and off-line channels with mobile-optimised websites and affiliate programmes, reinforced by daily deals, voucher codes and other performance marketing initiatives.