Hispanic shoppers lead online

5 December 2013
NEW YORK: Hispanics are significantly more likely to shop online than the average US consumer, according to new research which also shows them to be more responsive to mobile advertising.

Experian Marketing Services analysed visits to the top 500 online retail sites tracked by its Hitwise measurement service between June and November and found that Hispanic adults' share of the total was 21% higher than the online population in general.

In addition, Hispanics who owned smartphones were twice as likely as non-Hispanics to indicate interest in receiving advertisements on their phone. They were also 58% more likely to purchase products they saw advertised this way.

And, to a lesser extent, they were more inclined to use their mobile phone while shopping to find local deals, being 13% more likely to do so.

"Hispanic consumers embrace the concept of the 'always-on' consumer," explained Heather Dougherty, research director at Experian Marketing Services. "There is a significant opportunity for retailers and marketers to reach Hispanic shoppers as they shop and to drive engagement, even purchases, on their mobile device," she added.

In particular, Hispanic smartphone owners over-indexed in using their mobile devices to visit Macys.com (245 compared to an index of 100 for non-Hispanics), Sears.com (187), Gamestop.com (159), Walmart.com (153), and Oldnavy.com (140).

But while they were more likely to visit online retail sites they were only average users of shopping apps, with 37% utilising one in a typical month compared to 28% of all smartphone owners.

That said, there were several apps that Hispanics used far more than the general population, including Walgreens (210 against 100 for non-Hispanics), Ibotta (187) and Amazon Mobile (142).

Dougherty suggested retailers consider not only optimising website content for mobile but also offering websites and apps in Spanish. "This strategy could engage potential customers who may prefer to shop in their first language," she said.

Social media channels were another route to Hispanic shoppers, the report said, as 69% of this group accessed such networks at least once a day compared to an national average of 62%. And they did so across many devices including games consoles (121 against 100 for non-Hispanics), MP3 players (118) and smartphone web browsers (117).

Overall, said Dougherty, retailers needed to have "savvy mobile strategies and cross-channel execution capabilities" to reach Hispanics effectively.

Data sourced from PR Newswire; additional content by Warc staff
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