The Undeniable Mobile Effect On Holiday Shoppers

Today is June 30. Summer only officially launched 8 days ago yet here I am talking about holiday shoppers. No, I am not crazy from the heat. Retailers across the land are either knee-deep in their holiday plans for the coming season or about to start or are somewhere in between.

And based on results of a survey conducted by Oracle Marketing Cloud and Edison Research it would be wise for the same retailers to not just talk mobile but to actually be mobile – literally and figuratively. 

A little backstory to the research before we get mobile. 

In 2014, Oracle Marketing Cloud and Edison Research embarked on an initial exploration of the holiday shopper, by looking at their planned behavior prior to the 2014 holiday season, and then by examining what those consumers actually did by conducting similar research immediately following the 2014 holiday season.

We learned a great many things about consumers— particularly that their best-laid plans often go awry.

For this year, we revisited that research in order to determine which behaviors are trending, whether mobile is continuing to grow, how online shopping is impacting offline shopping, and other important shopping behaviors. 

Since mobile affects pretty much everything today, it should come as no surprise that it has a profound impact on holiday shoppers and how they shop, as witnessed by the following.

First a series of video interviews of consumers on their thoughts when it comes to mobile and holiday shopping, which is part of our qualitative part of the research. 

And the following findings which are based on the quantitative part of the research. 

The truth is none of the above should come as any surprise to ANY marketer, retail, B2C, B2B – whatever. The world is mobile. Period. 

However, one of the biggest increases from our 2014 post-holiday study to the 2015 post-holiday study was the percentage of holiday shoppers who told us that they had ever used an app to make a purchase. For the 2014 holiday season, 25% of consumers indicated they had used an app to make a holiday purchase—in itself a significant number—but in 2015 that number jumped markedly to 40%. This is nearly the percentage who indicated that they had made a mobile purchase in the 2015 holiday season using a website.

Clearly, the app has become a very important part of the transactional holiday shopping economy. 

Julie Lyle, the current Chairman of the Board for the Global Retail Marketing Association and former CMO of hgregg, Prudential Corporation Asia, and Walmart has a very direct message for marketers when it comes to mobile: 

"In today’s highly mobile environment, retailers who do not adopt a “mobile-first” roadmap do so at their own risk. In addition to the feature usage outlined above, consumers now use their smartphones to check availability or source out of stocks from other sellers, compare loyalty program rewards for purchases, confirm/compare warranty or return policies, seek inspiration/ help for product usage and more!"

The Happiest of Holidays 

Regardless of where you are in your 2016 retail holiday planning you can benefit from all the findings from this extensive research. Download Making Spirits Bright: Increase Holiday Results With Retail Shopping Research and enjoy your own version of a winter wonderland.