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Mobile Shopping Behavior During the Holiday Season

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More than half (53%) of US consumers say they will use a mobile device to research or purchase products this holiday season, according to a recent report from Burst Media.

Among this group of active mobile researchers/shoppers, 59% say they will use their devices to assist in making holiday online purchases, and 46% say they will do so to help with offline purchases.

Women are much more likely than men to say they will conduct product research on their mobile devices to assist in making an online purchase (63% versus 52%).

One-third of consumers surveyed who research/shop via mobile say will make holiday gift purchases directly from their devices—with more men than women (40% vs. 28%) reporting they will do so.

Most consumers with smartphones/tablets also plan to use their mobile devices during the holiday season to compare product prices (62% expect to) and read product reviews (54%).


Below, additional key findings from the report, which was based on data from a survey conducted in October 2014 of 786 US adults age 18 or older.

In-Store Mobile Usage 

  • 50% of respondents say they plan to use their mobile devices inside physical retail locations to help make holiday purchasing decisions.
  • 54% will use their mobile devices to research and compare prices of different stores, with more women than men (58% vs. 48%) saying they will do so.
  • The gender divide is even greater regarding the second most-cited in-store mobile behavior: 60% of women vs. 33% of men say they will turn to mobile devices in retail locations to access coupons or sales promotion codes.

Why Consumers Shop Online

  • 25% of respondents say their favorite reason for holiday shopping digitally is that it's "relaxed" and helps them avoid stress.
  • The second most popular reason for online holiday shopping (18% of respondents) is convenience, with more women than men (22% vs. 14%) citing it as their favorite reason.

About the research: The report was based on data from a survey conducted in October 2014 of 786 US adults age 18 or older.


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Ayaz Nanji is an independent digital strategist and a co-founder of ICW Content, a marketing agency specializing in content creation for brands and businesses. He is also a research writer for MarketingProfs. He has worked for Google/YouTube, the Travel Channel, AOL, and the New York Times.

LinkedIn: Ayaz Nanji

Twitter: @ayaznanji

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  • by Renae Christine Wed Nov 12, 2014 via web

    One of the best articles for the holiday season I've seen. So chunky and full of stats -- like a big FAT chocolate chip cookie. Yum!

  • by Caroline Thu Nov 13, 2014 via web

    In the property industry where the purchase is one of the biggest in your life, you would think research is a must prior to purchase. I'm not sure buyers (with the intention of occupying) think that way. It's often a purchase from the heart. That's not the same for investors though.

    One time where research is evident - one of the biggest real estate websites in Australia claims there biggest traffic numbers are recorded in January (which is the main school holidays here) when people have time. Because of that, we will have digital presence only trying to target people that it's relevant too. Other mediums are saturated by retail trying to get their piece of the Christmas purchase pie.

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