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59pc smartphone owners plan to use devices to compare prices during holiday season: Deloitte

According to the company’s annual survey of holiday spending intentions and trends, there is a new holiday shopping tradition – smartphones and social networks. Smartphone devices continue to grow and prove to be essential tools for holiday shopping.

“Relative to mobile, consumers are increasingly using the mobile device to do a myriad of things, including checking prices and getting products,” said Kasey Lobaugh, multichannel retail practice leader, principal and owner at Deloitte, Kansas City, MI.

The survey was commissioned by Deloitte and conducted online. The survey polled a sample of 5,019 consumers.

Mobile shopping
The study finds that many consumers plan to take out their smartphones before their wallets this holiday season.

More than one-quarter – 27 percent – of smartphone owners plan to use their devices for holiday shopping.

Additionally, 67 percent will use their handsets to search for store locations and 46 percent will use their devices to check product availability.

“Consumers want to use phones during their shopping experiences,” Mr. Lobaugh said. “Look at the degree to which mobile is influencing in-store convergence.

“Mobile is influential to the in-store process,” he said.

Role of social
Deloitte saw that social media will have a big impact this holiday season, with even more consumers visiting social media sites before tackling their gift lists.

Consumers are increasingly turning to social networks such as Facebook and Twitter to share their product finds with family and friends and get their opinion on it.

Forty-four percent of consumers plan to use social media to seek discounts, read reviews and check family and friends’ gift lists, per the study.

Many retailers are seeing the importance of mobile and figuring out how to incorporate it into their everyday initiatives.

“A collection of retailers are doing better this year,” Mr. Lobaugh said.”And next year, the main focus is going to be on mobility as a tool for the physical shopper.”

Final Take
Rimma Kats is staff reporter on Mobile Marketer, New York