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43pc of mobile shoppers have downloaded a retail app: study

With the rise in mobile shopping, retailers have an opportunity to hook consumers in-store. A new study from online shopping review site found that 43 percent of mobile shoppers surveyed have downloaded a retailer’s application.

However, the study found that of the mobile users who have downloaded an app, only 14 percent of consumers said the app helped them make a purchase. The study also looked at how mobile consumers are using their devices in-store.

“Retailer’s apps are not set up to serve the needs of consumers,” said Manish Rathi, cofounder/vice president of marketing at, Sunnyvale, CA. is an online shopping and consumer electronics review site. The company claims to use 100 million data points across the Web to give consumers information.

Missed connection
The “Study Finds: Retailers Are Not Providing Smartphone-Equipped Shoppers What They Need” report found that consumers are not using mobile apps in-stores the way they should be.

Of the total consumers polled for the survey, 66 percent said they had checked out a product in store but bought it online afterwards.

However, 78 percent of smartphone owners surveyed said they walked into a store to look at a product and purchased it later online, showing that retailer’s apps are not up to speed.

The study also broke down which types of products consumers saw in stores and decided to purchase later online.

Fifty-eight percent of smartphone owners surveyed said they browsed consumer electronics in-store but bought the product online.

Forty-eight percent of all shoppers polled said they purchased consumer electronic products online after seeing it in-store.

Additionally, 41 percent of smartphone owners looked at shoes in stores and bought them later online.

Mr. Rathi credits online retailers and as companies that have pushed consumers out of stores with programs that give consumers free shipping and flexible return policies.

“Stores need to have retail apps to help consumers make in-store decisions,” Mr. Rathi said.“But the reality is that retailer’s apps are not set up to serve the needs of consumers.”

Mobile disparity
The study asked consumers who owned a smartphone if they had ever used their device in-store to help them make a purchase.

More than half of mobile device owners surveyed said that they had used their smartphone to help them shop.

Of the mobile consumers who said they had used their devices in-store, 42 percent said that they had used it to check prices.

Consumers are increasingly using mobile devices more to help make purchasing decisions.

Recently, Google predicted that 15 percent of Black Friday Web searches will be done via mobile (see story).

“The study is proof that there is an opportunity for retailer apps to become more targeted and help consumers with things like competitive pricing,” Mr. Rathi said.

“The first step for retailers will be finding a way to take their Web intelligence and format it into bite-size pieces of information,” he said.

“Retailers are still in the first inning of mobile commerce, but consumers have evolved and are in the fifth and sixth innings and expecting more.”

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is editorial assistant on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York