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Ads drive mobile shopping norm

News, 28 September 2016

GLOBAL: Mobile shopping has become normal behaviour around the world, with mobile advertising and social media playing an important role in research and purchase, according to a new study.

The report from the IAB, Mobile Commerce: A Global Perspective, was based on surveys of 200 adults in each of 19 markets (Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, France, Ireland, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Sweden, Turkey, Singapore, the UK and the US).

This found that three-quarters (75%) of smartphone and tablet users said they had purchased a product or service on their device in the past six months.

And more than half (57%) of the mobile purchasers surveyed said that they had been buying on mobile for over a year; more than a quarter (28%) had made their first mobile purchase in the last six months.

Austria, Peru, and Colombia were key new adopter markets, with significantly more consumers making their first purchase on mobile within the past year, followed by Mexico, France, Turkey, and Chile.

The study highlighted the role of advertising in this process, with 76% mobile purchasers reporting they had engaged with a mobile ad in the previous six months.

On average, 33% clicked on an ad to find out more information, while 28% clicked to visit the advertiser's website, and 21% to actually purchase.

The highest levels of clicking to purchase came in Brazil, Canada, Colombia, the UK and the US.

Social media was also important, as 60% of mobile purchasers said they often discovered products and services to buy on social platforms, and 36% using those same platforms to share their mobile purchase experience.

"Pressing the 'buy' button on mobile devices is now a regular occurrence the world over," said Anna Bager, SVP/ Mobile and Video at the IAB.

"Marketers and media agencies need to fully embrace smartphones and tablets as a critical pathway for all shopping activities and increase investment if they want to build meaningful relationships with mobile consumers, driving them from discovery to purchase."

Unsurprisingly, mobile wallet users were most heavily engaged in mobile commerce but the research said they were also more likely to engage with mobile ads than average mobile shoppers (82% vs. 76%).

Data sourced from IAB; additional content by Warc staff