Mobile phones becoming go-to shopping tools in stores: report

Mobile phones becoming go-to shopping tools in stores: report

Summary: Mobile commerce is taking off, but surprisingly often in actual brick-and-mortar stores more than you would expect.

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One of the bright sides to mobile shopping is that it gives you the leisure and convenience of being able to get necessary (and unnecessary) shopping tasks done from anywhere.

Funny enough, that includes inside brick-and-mortar stores too.

Many more than half of Americans used their mobile phones while in stores to make purchasing decisions during the 2011 holiday season, according to new figures from the Pew Internet & American Life Project.

The survey is based upon the responses from a "nationally representative sample of 1,000 adults living in the continental United States," covering the 30-day period before and after December 25.

Specifically, slightly more than half of all adult cell owners used their phone for at least one of the following three reasons during the holiday shopping season:

  • Calling a friend while in a store for advice about a particular product
  • Looking up product reviews
  • Comparing prices to see if something was cheaper elsewhere

I can attest that I found myself using my smartphone for the last reason, which ended up actually making this past holiday shopping season the easiest I've ever endured.

For example, apps like Amazon's barcode mobile app made it so simple to just scan the barcode on a particular item, find out if it was cheaper or not, and then order it directly from my phone. Literally, I completed most of my holiday shopping within 5 minutes. (Of course, that doesn't include the time I took to actually go to the store, but sometimes you need to find inspiration for gifts outside of the home.)

While I do like to give business to mom-and-pop shops and local stores, we're still all on a budget. And mobile commerce platforms can make that a lot easier to meet.

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Topics: Security, Mobility, Wi-Fi

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4 comments
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  • RE: Mobile phones becoming go-to shopping tools in stores: report

    In the future, brick and mortar "stores" will be reduced to being large showrooms that you pay $5.00 to gain admission so that you can play around with the physical item that you turn around and actually buy from an online retailer.
    dsf3g
    • RE: Mobile phones becoming go-to shopping tools in stores: report

      @dsf3g .
      dsf3g
    • RE: Mobile phones becoming go-to shopping tools in stores: report

      @dsf3g Even better yet. You walk into the Brick-n-Mortar store, take out your WP 7 phone, look up the product, and pay for it at the shelf. When you go by the register a receipt is on your WP 7 phone, so you can exit the store with your purchased items without having to stop and pay the old fashion way.
      Stephen-B
  • RE: Mobile phones becoming go-to shopping tools in stores: report

    When the Nokia Lumia 900 is unleashed in the US, it will be the most sought after phone available. I have several people from the office I work in, camping out in front of the local AT&T store so we can make sure to get our Lumias. Did I mention the Lumia 900 is slated to be out in March. The excitement is going to grow as the launch date draws near
    Stephen-B