The Mobile Purchase Path

Mobile usage by consumers has been on the rise, and it isn’t slowing down. Because of this trend, it is becoming more important than ever for companies to understand how consumers are using mobile devices to learn about products and complete purchases.

Moosylvania, an independent advertising agency in St. Louis, conducted a study to analyze how mobile usage has altered the consumer path to purchase. The study focused specifically on smart phone and tablet usage, and how purchase behavior differed by device, including:

  • How consumer response to advertising differs from smartphones to tablets
  • Usage of mobile to research products prior to purchase
  • Mobile search while shopping in stores
  • QR code usage
  • Types of purchases made on mobile devices
  • Mobile post-purchase behavior

Key Takeaways on Mobile Purchase Behavior

So, what is mobile usage really growing? Well based on the commissioned study, 60% of those interviewed used smart phone, and 45% are saving up for a tablet as well.

Consumers are using smartphones and tabconsumer mobile usage tabletslets during each phase of the purchase funnel, and peer reviews are becoming more influential than advertising. However, based on the study consumers can be successfully reached through video ads in mobile apps, and most effectively on tablets instead of smartphones.

23% of the responders clicked on ads on mobile devices, while less than 1% click on ads on websites

Usage doesn’t just vary by mobile device, it also varies by gender. The study shows that women use smartphones and tablets more for social networking, while men use mobile devices for finding out information.

Consumers use mobile devices most often to seek information about products that interest them. The  information that they seek most often is:

  • Price
  • Product Reviews
  • Product Details

Of consumers who read product reviews on mobile devices the majority view them on smartphones, rather than tables, most likely due to the convenience of smartphones.

Consumers’ in-store purchase behavior has changed, they now enter a in-store purchase with the intent of using their smart phone to search the web when deciding on a purchase. Users typically access information about a product once or twice on a mobile device before purchases, most often on a mobile site or app. Consumers are more likely to make a purchase through an app than a mobile site, and most likely on a smart phone than on a tablet.

I highly recommend checking out the full list of findings from Moosylvania’s Study on Consumer Usage of Mobile Technology, for more information on how consumers use QR codes, research products, post-purchase behavior, mobile advertising, and more.  Use the following link to download a PDF of the study results:

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