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How Smart Phones are Helping Create a New Generation of “Smart Shoppers”

Written by Owen Shapiro on . Posted in White Papers & Articles

Most smart phone owners now using mobile internet to aid shopping at bricks & mortar retailers:  One in ten using phones to price check at point of sale.

Underscoring soaring consumer interest in use of internet and social media to aid in shopping, a new national survey by Leo J. Shapiro and Associates (LJS) found that two-thirds of owners use their smart phone to aid in their shopping, and over a third do so while actually inside traditional retail stores.  While at the point of sale for an item, one in ten smart phone owners report doing price checks before they buy.

These new findings point to the striking penetration of smart phone enabled shoppers or “smart-shopping” into the everyday lives of Americans.

Based on data from a hybrid phone/online study conducted in December 2011 and February  2012 with a national sample of 314 smart phone owners, the survey found that sixty-six percent (66%) use their smart phones to aid in shopping, and thirty-eight percent (38%) do so while actually in a traditional retail store.  Smart phone owners are about as likely to access shopping information in the store aisle (29%) as in the rest of the store (25%).

While actually near point of sale, shoppers are most likely to:

  • Look up facts and features (15%)
  • Compare prices at different stores (11%)
  • Read product reviews on retail sites (9%)
  • Compare prices at retailer’s websites (8%)

“Smart phone enabled shopping or ‘smart-shopping’ is rapidly becoming a mainstream activity for smart phone owners.  Given the rapid rise in smart phone ownership, traditional retailers and product brand managers face a new wave of challenges to serve increasingly informed and independent consumers,” notes Owen Shapiro, Vice President of LJS. “The use of point of sale price checks breaks down one of the long-standing advantages held by retailers on ‘blind priced’ items – products that consumers buy infrequently or that are low involvement.”

 

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