Monthly Archives: March 2012

Consumer Interest In Mobile Coupons

For over 120 years, consumers have relied on coupons as a way to save money and economically sample new products.  Couponing is also a great way to affect mobile customers.  A new study has been released documenting consumer interest in mobile coupons.

•  55% of consumers indicated they were interested in mobile coupons

•  Just 10% have actually received a
mobile coupon from an advertiser

•  45% of consumers said they were interested in storing coupons in a mobile wallet

•  36% want to automatically receive coupons from local merchants

•  Nearly half want to be able to replace loyalty cards with an app

•  Four in 10 want to receive reminders about available coupons

What Does This Mean To You?

On-the-go consumers are looking for a better way to utilize coupons – what could be a better delivery source than an item that they carry with them where ever they go?   The easier any business can make it on their customers, the better off that business will be.  Another aspect to mobile coupons is the ease at which consumers can share them.  If someone is going to share your coupon with a friend or family member, it’s almost like a mobile endorsement for your business.  One of the most fascinating findings isn’t how many people are interested in receiving mobile coupons, but that just 10% of consumers had received mobile coupons.  If you offer mobile coupons, you need to promote the fact. This is another great way to build a database to mine from. For more information on generating business with mobile coupons, please contact your Orlando Sentinel Media Group representative or:
Al Fiala
Advertising Research Supervisor
407-420-5702
afiala@orlandosentinel.com

Source: Mobile Commerce Daily; Mercator Advisory Group

Mobile Easter Shoppers

In yesterday’s post, we showed new research on the increase of Easter shopping.   From clothes to candy, consumers plan on spending more on the spring holiday than in prior years.  The date on which Easter falls is not the only mobile thing about the holiday, Easter shoppers are also mobile shoppers.

•  Over 40% of smart phone owners who celebrate Easter will use their device to research or purchase holiday items

•  Among tablet owners who celebrate Easter, over half will use the device for Easter shopping

•  Just over one in four Easter celebrating tablet owners will buy holiday items via the tablet and 37% will research products

•  Over nearly 20% of Easter shoppers will make an online purchase, thats up over 25% from last Easter

What Does This Mean To You?

Just as we saw with Christmas, Easter shopping is going mobile.  Does your company have a specific mobile strategy for holiday times? Not having a mobile strategy can mean a big difference in store traffic.  When you think of the amount of shoppers that are comparing your products to the competition or simply looking for store hours and direction on mobile devices – the lack of mobile strategy can cost you sales.  Remember that consumers utilize mobile sites different than standard sites.  Make sure that your mobile site is easy to navigate and prominently shows your location and offers tap to call functionality.  With so many consumers purchasing apparel during Easter, you may want to think of a tablet only site.  Just like a mobile site, it only displays on tablets.  These sites allow you to use the functionality of a tablet, the portability of a smart phone but gives you a larger screen size.  Also,  tablets offer great resolution, this helps with the “look and feel” factor of apparel shopping.  For more information on mobile strategies to boost your holiday sales, please contact your Orlando Sentinel Media Group representative or:
Al Fiala
Advertising Research Supervisor
407-420-5702
afiala@orlandosentinel.com

Source: National Retail Federation

Here Comes Peter Cottontail

When it comes to holiday mascots, The Easter Bunny probably has the worst publicist.  Santa, Cupid and the Leprechaun all seem to get more respect than the Rabbit – but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t bring in the shoppers.  The National Retail Federation just released their spending outlook for Easter  and egg grass won’t be the only green this holiday.

• Total shopping for Easter is anticipated
to reach nearly $17 billion

• Per household spending is expected to
be just over $145 that’s a jump 11% year
over year.

• Nearly 90% of Easter shoppers are will
be shopping for candy.  The projected
household average for candy is expected to
be over $21 this year

• Almost half of shoppers will be buying apparel.  Apparel spending is expected to increase over 20% per household

• Easter shoppers are also expected to eat more than jelly beans – the average consumer is predicted to spend over $44 on their Easter meal

• The average Easter shopper will be spending over $20 on gifts for friends and family and over half of consumers will buy a greeting card

What Does This Mean To You?

Easter is an excellent time to kick off spring sales.  Even though the country experienced a mild winter, consumers were stuck with dull, drab clothing.  The warm weather probably has them hopping to add some color to their wardrobe.  Because Easter’s date moves every year, this gives you an excellent opportunity to build a database through sales reminders.  Encourage customers to sign up and offer a discount.   For more information on reaching Easter shoppers and diners, please contact your Orlando Sentinel Media Group representative or:
Al Fiala
Advertising Research Supervisor
407-420-5702
afiala@orlandosentinel.com

Source: National Retail Federation

Affluent Mobile Consumers

We recently had a post that talked about the growth of the mobile web and how the mobile web will have more traffic than the standard web by 2015.  The entry-level price of smart phones, cost of operation versus regular computers and increased availability of WiFi are probably the biggest reasons for the overall growth of the mobile web.  With all that being said, the affluent shopper is still very active in mcommerce.

• Over two-thirds of affluent consumers
have shopped on a mobile device

• Over 60% of affluent shoppers who shop with mobile devices have made a mobile purchase in the past year

• On average, wealthy mobile shoppers have spent an average of $628 through mcommerce

• Nearly three-quarters of mobile affluent consumers use apps at least once a day

• 80% of mobile affluent consumers have downloaded an app

What Does This Mean To You?

Even though affluent consumers prefer to make in-store purchases because of customer service, they are also strong mobile consumers.  The amount of choices and increased shopping access that mobile technology provides may reasons for this behavior.  One of the things that businesses can leverage to reach affluent mobile consumers is apps. Affluent consumers are more likely than others to download apps and their daily interaction gives you a great opportunity to connect with them.  Affluent mobile consumers are also interested in the shopping experience.  Tablets apps give users an enhanced shopping experience over smart phones and upper end consumers are more likely to own tablets.  Tablet owners are also heavy end shoppers – over 70% make purchases through their device on a weekly basis.  For more information on connecting with affluent mobile shoppers through apps and tablets, please contact your Orlando Sentinel Media Group representative or:
Al Fiala
Advertising Research Supervisor
407-420-5702
afiala@orlandosentinel.com

Source: Mobile Commerce Daily; Luxury Institute

Fashion And Ecommerce

The first businesses that saw the success with online were probably the books, music, video and ticketing segments.  These are businesses where the touch and feel purchase factor are not as great.   Now it looks as though apparel purchasing online has become fashionable (bad pun, I know).  A new report has come out that shows us how the online fashion is growing.

•  In 2012, total ecommerce is expected to reach  over $224 billion. That’s equals 15% year over year growth

•  Fashion and accessories retail ecommerce are anticipated to hit $41 billion this year, a 20% jump from last year

•  By 2014, apparel and accessories sales online a thought to reach over $56 billion and make up nearly 20% of total retail ecommerce dollars

•  In 2016, fashion ecommerce is projected to  reach $73 billion and make up over 20% of all ecommerce sales

What Does This Mean To You?

The growth of fashion ecommerce is great news to small businesses.  Through effective SEO, social and mobile strategies, everything from boutiques to vintage stores can now compete on the same playing field with larger competitors.  While the bigger names may have more top of mind awareness, smaller businesses have the ability to be more customer service oriented and responsive to shopper needs.  Adding things like free shipping, live chat assistance and social opportunities could give you a competitive advantage.  For more information on strategies to help small and medium businesses, please contact your Orlando Sentinel Media Group representative or:
Al Fiala
Advertising Research Supervisor
407-420-5702
afiala@orlandosentinel.com

Source: emarketer; Department of Commerce

Social Media And Political Alienation

One piece of age old advice we’ve all heard is “never talk politics in the workplace”.  We don’t need to go into the reasons why, they are pretty obvious.  Social networks have expanded the workplace and the advice about politics should extend to your company’s social entities.  Your social media offerings are often the face of your organization and if you are marketing yourself through social media, the goal should be to gain as many fans and followers as possible.  A new study has been released that details how people react to social media posts about politics and explain why they could be bad for business.

•  One in six social networkers have blocked, ignored or shunned a friend for posting their political views

•  Nearly two-thirds of social networkers say they only sometimes agree with politically oriented posts from their friends

•  Almost 40% of social networkers say they have received negative reactions for posting politically oriented material

•  38% of social networkers discovered their friends political views were different than they thought after reading their politically oriented post

What Does This Mean To You?

This is an election year and political commentary is always a lightning rod.  While many businesses might want to invoke their First Amendment Right to Free Speech and say they have every right to talk politics on their social media offerings, I would counter that it’s all about getting results.  In today’s economy you need to cultivate every sale opportunity you have  – and with the passion behind politics, it’s easy to lose business because of political posts.  It doesn’t matter where you stand on the political spectrum, it’s best to leave the political commentary through social media to the politicians.  If one in six social networkers have shunned a friend and nearly 40% have received negative reactions from friends for posting something political – Imagine how they will react to a company or brand they have no personal relationship with.  Your organization’s social reputation is something to be valued; there is enough to worry about without self-inflicted damage.  For more information on social media and reputation management, please contact your Orlando Sentinel Media Group representative or:
Al Fiala
Advertising Research Supervisor
407-420-5702
afiala@orlandosentinel.com

Source: emarketer; Pew Internet & American Life Project

The Online Male Shopper

Shopping is not something that a lot of guys enjoy doing.  This is often evidenced by the fact if guys find a shirt they like, they’ll get it in every color offered so they don’t have to shop for another shirt.  Online shopping has made shopping easier for guys – the fact that they can shop at their convenience is a huge plus.  That and the fact there’s not a sales person asking if you’d like try something on and you realize that you might be putting on pants that someone else has already worn.  A new study has been released that looks at men’s online shopping habits with some interesting results.

•  Over seven in 10 male online shoppers checked for the best price before purchasing

•  Nearly 60% read online reviews

•  44% told friends about positive experiences online corncerning products or brands

•  36%  are regular readers of online forums

•  Just over one-third said they have “liked” a product on Facebook

•  30% have posted comments in an online forum

•  Less than one in 6 said they ever left negative comments on a company’s Facebook page

What Does This Mean To You?

While men and women share many shopping traits, one of the most interesting differences has to do with influence.  In a recent post, we reported on a study where women basically said they have a responsibility to influence purchasing habits of their friends and families.  This research shows that men don’t generally share that feeling of responsibility. While over 40% will digital endorse products online and a small percentage will leave negative comments on social networks – men are more open to air their opinion on more male-centric categories.  For instance, roughly 8 in 10 men will share positive information in the categories of automotive or exercise and 68% have said they have “liked” a health or wellness companies Facebook page.  These are categories are also where men are able to be influenced.  Overall, 36% of man say they read online forums but over 70% indicate they read tech forums.  For more information on digitally connecting with males consumers, please contact your Orlando Sentinel Media Group representative or:
Al Fiala
Advertising Research Supervisor
407-420-5702
afiala@orlandosentinel.com

Source: emarketer; Men’s Health magazine; GfK Roper

The Growth of In-Store Mobile Activities And Showrooming

In yesterday’s post, we shared information on the kinds of mobile activities consumers take part in while shopping in brick & mortar locations.  A new study has been released that gives some historical perspective and points to a problem many retailers are facing –  “Showrooming”. “Showrooming” is defined as the act of researching a product in a store, then purchasing it elsewhere – online, by phone or from competitors location.  In fact, 45% of online shoppers have researched a product in a retail store prior to buying it online.

The ways US online shoppers use their mobile phone while shopping in-store:

•  Accessed that store’s web site:
2009 – 52%
2011 – 65%

•  Accessed a competitors web site:
2009 – 25%
2011 – 43%

•  Accessed a aggregative shopping site:
2009 – 15%
2011 – 26%

•  Accessed that stores mobile application:
2009 – 4%
2011 – 21%

•  Accessed competitors mobile application:
2009 – 4%
2011 – 14%

What Does This Mean To You?

Mobile technology has given businesses so many different ways to connect with shoppers, but it’s also put a world of resources in to consumers hands.  The fact that competitive site visitation is up over 70% in the past year illustrates how savvy shoppers have become due to mobile.  As a business, there are several things you can do to keep shoppers in your store or at the very least keep them shopping your brand.  Offering free shipping or free set up and delivery are things that might keep customers in your store.  As much competitive shopping that is going on, there is some research showing that the sky is not falling.  35% of shoppers eventually made a purchase from the store they were comparison shopping from, 19% bought online and just 8% bought from a competitor.  For more information on how to create traffic to your location from mobile, please contact your Orlando Sentinel Media Group representative or:
Al Fiala
Advertising Research Supervisor
407-420-5702
afiala@orlandosentinel.com

Source: emarketer; ClickIQ, Pew Internet & American Life Project

In-Store Mobile Shopping Activities

One of the things that mobile has had the biggest affect on is the in-store shopping experience.   There is a recent study that looks at not just what mobile activities consumers engage in while shopping but the differences between female and male shoppers.

•  Took Picture of a Product:
24% of female smart phone owners
20% of male smart phone owners

•  Texted or Called Friends/Family About
a Product:
22% of females
19% of males

•  Scanned a Product Barcode:
16% of females
20% of males

•  Sent Picture to Friends/Family:
20% of females
15% of males

•  Found Store Location:
12% of females
13% of males

•  Compared Product Prices:
10% of females
14% of males

•  Found Coupons or Deals:
11% of females
8% of males

•  Researched Product Features:
7% of females
11% of males

What Does This Mean To You?

The functionality of smart phones has made them nearly invaluable in our everyday lives.  One of the things this research points out is that shoppers are doing their homework while shopping in stores.
What has your company done to influence these mobile in-store shoppers?  While just one in five males and one in seven females have scanned a bar code, QR or 2D codes are a great way for you to keep them engaged with you instead
of possibly visiting your competitions site.  You can not only have coupons
and deals, but price comparisons and product information linked to a QR
code as well.  Just make sure your employees can assist customers who maybe having trouble accessing codes.  Also have call to action signage explaining
what they will get for scanning a code.  Another way to connect with mobile shoppers are permission based SMS campaigns.  Promote it in-store and offer
an instant discount for signing up.  For more information on mobile strategies that can lead to big results, please contact your Orlando Sentinel Media Group representative or:
Al Fiala
Advertising Research Supervisor
407-420-5702
afiala@orlandosentinel.com

Source: comScore

Mobile Social Media Activities

From yesterday’s post, we learned that over 35% of smart phone owners engage with social media through smart phones.  These on-the-go social networkers are a great audience to forge a relationship with.  Knowing what activities they engage in can help you form target them as potential customers.

•  85% of mobile social networkers read posts from people they know personally

•  Nearly 75% mobile-ly update their status

•  Six in 10 followed a link to a website

•  Nearly 60% read posts from brands, organizations, & events

•       Nearly half read posts from celebrities & public figures

•       Over 40% posted a link to a website

•       37% received a deal or offer

•       Nearly a third clicked on an ad

What Does This Mean To You?

Social networks are moving in a mobile direction and all of these activities can have implications for your organization.  The fact that 60% of mobile social networkers read posts from brands, organizations and events is huge.  This means that they will pay attention to your message, as long as it’s targeted to them.  The fact that one-third of social networkers are interacting with ads shows how valid social advertising is.    There has been several studies showing the impact of digital word of mouth – this is something you can leverage with mobile social networkers.  Have you thought about a strategy of rewarding customers for posting a positive experience while they are in your store or a status update telling their friends where they are shopping?   The combination of mobile & social opens up several innovative ways of engaging consumers.  In tomorrow’s post, we’ll examine the in-store activities that mobile shoppers are involved in . For more information on creating mobile and social strategies designed to bring in shoppers, please contact your Orlando Sentinel Media Group representative or:
Al Fiala
Advertising Research Supervisor
407-420-5702
afiala@orlandosentinel.com

Source: comScore