Smartphones shape habits in Europe

08 October 2012

LONDON: A majority of smartphone owners in Europe are using these devices to research products and make purchases, a multimarket study has found.

Tradedoubler, the digital marketing and technology firm, polled 2,000 smartphone owners in France, Germany, Sweden and the UK, finding that 71% researched goods and services via this route.

More specifically, 32% of contributors research goods on a weekly basis. This total rose to 37% of under-35s, 40% of high earners and 46% of iPhone owners.

Some 47% of those who sought out information in this way then made a purchase, while 38% bought items in stores. In all, 25% purchased via their mobile, as did 7% from their tablet.

When discussing mobile internet use as a whole, 66% of smartphone owners accessed this media channel at home. A further 57% did so on the move, while 24% went online while in stores.

Among the audience doing so in stores, 42% said they used the mobile web there because they were hoping to find a better price elsewhere, 19% were searching for vouchers, and 16% were accessing location-based offers.

"Much has been written about mobile representing a potential nightmare scenario for high street retailers,” Dan Cohen, market unit leader at Tradedoubler, said.

"The opposite can be true as long as retailers are prepared to harness the potential of mobile, and not be afraid of closing a sale through different channels.  We're finding that mobile search can be a tremendous catalyst to driving consumers onto the high street."

Additionally, 56% of respondents said they were open to receiving location-based deals on their handset, while 40% expressed an interest in scanning barcodes and QR codes and 35% wanted to search for coupons.

But only 20% of the sample were keen to use saved credit card details to complete in-store transactions via their mobile.

In all, 53% of interviewees had made at least one mcommerce purchase to date, a figure not including downloads. Cosmetics, books, transport tickets and footwear were some of the top categories here.

Another 57% of respondents would be more likely to do so if security processes were enhanced, and 56% said they wanted their phone number to remain private.

Data sourced from Tradedoubler; additional content by Warc staff