Survey: Mobile shoppers will account for 28% of holiday spending

FRAMINGHAM, Mass. Mobile shoppers will account for nearly one-third of the money spent this holiday season by U.S. consumers, according to IDC Retail Insights.

According to its latest report, "Outlook for Mobile and Social Media Commerce in the 2010 Holiday Shopping Season," which will be published in early December, IDC Retail Insights surveyed more than 1,000 U.S. consumers ages 19 years and older in September to determine how consumers will use mobile social media commerce as they shop during the 2010 holiday season. While about 73% of those surveyed are members of Facebook or other social networks and 68% own smart phones -- and consumers continue to grow more comfortable with mobile and social media commerce -- IDC Retail Insights noted that an easy-to-use mobile website significantly influences consumers, across all age groups, on where to shop this holiday season. Overall, such consumers will account for 28% ($127 billion) of the $447 billion that the National Retail Federation predicted U.S. consumers will spend this holiday season.


Other key findings from the IDC Retail Insights survey include:

  • More than one-third of smart phone-carrying consumers (who represent 24% of all U.S. consumers) are ready to use their mobile devices in ways that transform how they shop everywhere and, in particular, how they shop in retail stores;

  • New behaviors facilitated by mobility — all of which can take place in stores — include searching for price and product information, checking merchandise availability, and comparing prices at nearby stores, browsing product reviews and purchasing goods;

  • Consumers using multiple channels sequentially as they move from Web to store will give way to concurrent omnichannel behaviors as consumers bring their comfortable use of m-commerce with them into the store. These new behaviors will exert pressures that weaken the store's immediate influence on purchase decisions "at the shelf"; and

  • In general, social media doesn’t have widespread influence on shopping decisions, but friends influence one another’s shopping behavior on social networks, and sites that have earned consumer trust will influence this behavior as well.


"MSM-commerce introduces a new consumer shopping model that changes how consumers shop — not simply when and where they shop, as e-commerce has already enabled," said Greg Girard, program director, retail merchandise strategies at IDC Retail Insights. "It is clear that MSM-commerce already has an influence on consumers' perception of brand value and their shopping intentions. We believe the retailers with superior mobile and social media commerce strategies in place will have a decided advantage."

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