NEW YORK: Mobile devices are described as having become indispensable for shoppers when aiding and influencing their purchase behaviour and decisions, according to a new global survey.

Indeed, globally, more than half (53%) of consumers say they use their mobile device when shopping to compare prices, while a similar proportion (52%) use them to research product information.

More than 4-in-10 (44%) use mobile devices to look for coupons or deals, while consumers also report using them to make better shopping decisions (42%), to make shopping trips quicker or more efficient (41%) and, ultimately, to purchase products (38%).

These are some of the headline findings from Nielsen's Mobile Shopping, Banking and Payment report, which is based on responses from more than 30,000 online consumers across 63 countries.

In addition to the 38% who say they purchased goods or services on their mobile devices in the past six months, a further 34% used a mobile app to make a purchase over the same period.

Asia-Pacific leads the way when it comes to mobile shopping, the report found, with approximately half of respondents in China (50%), India (49%), South Korea (47%) and Vietnam (46%) reporting that they used a mobile device to purchase over the past six months.

These countries also topped the list when it comes to the proportion of consumers who say they made a purchase via a mobile app – China (50%), South Korea (48%), India (47%) and Vietnam (43%).

"Optimising the mobile experience – whether it's an app or a mobile version of a desktop site – should be at the heart of any e-commerce strategy," observed Stuart Tagg, Finance Services Leader at Nielsen Europe.

"A poor mobile experience may lead to lower conversion rates and drive shoppers to competitors' storefronts, sites or apps. Retailers developing mobile products should keep in mind four fundamental shopper needs: ease, convenience, choice and value.

"That is, the solution should satisfy a variety of trip purposes and deliver strong value for money in a way that requires less time and effort."

Data sourced from Nielsen; additional content by Warc staff