But the volume of research done on smartphones doesn’t necessarily translate over into mobile conversions.
When asked what they had done after researching products on their mobile, 38% of respondents said they completed a purchase in store compared to 25% that made a purchase on their smartphone.
In response to a different question, 41% of respondents said they use their mobile in-store at least half the time they are out shopping.
The findings, which come from a Tradedoubler survey of 2,000 smartphone owners, highlight the fact that high street retailers should be trying to engage with mobile users in-store to encourage them to make a purchase rather than viewing m-commerce as an entirely separate channel.
It’s a topic Econsultancy covered in more detail in our new report How The Internet Can Save The High Street, which contains more than 60 recommendations for retailers who want to succeed in a digital age, covering topics including reserve and collect, in-store kiosks and pop-up shops.
The report also discusses the benefits of offering consumer’s free in-store Wi-Fi. As well as improving the customer experience by making research easier, Wi-Fi gives retailers the ability to prompt customers to visit web pages with reviews of the products they are considering in store.
This has the potential to be a valuable sales driver and as the connection is free customers don’t tend to mind being sold to.
According to an OnDeviceResearch survey, 74% of respondents would be happy for a retailer to send a text or email with promotions while they’re using in-store Wi-Fi. In this way, mobile can be used to enhance the in-store experience for consumers, as well as providing retailers with some precision tools to target the mobile customer.
The Tradedoubler white paper, Mobile Consumers & You, also asked smartphone owners what they use their phones for in-store.
It found that 42% of in-store researchers are looking for better prices elsewhere, 19% are searching for vouchers and 16% for location-based offers.
The report also found that mobile research crosses a number of retail categories.
Over 30% of mobile researcher have consulted their device when it comes to buying music, clothing and accessories, events and train tickets, holidays and hotels, and consumer electronics.
And more than 20% have used their mobile to investigate purchases of books, entertainment, flights, cosmetics and cars.