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Going Mobile – Consumers vs. SMBs

By: 3 January 2014

According to BIA/Kelsey’s Consumer Commerce Monitor™ (CCM) survey, usage of digital media by consumers for local shopping is close to 100%, demonstrating how consumers “want” and “intend” to shop. Usage of smartphones and tablets for local shopping is important and growing, yet a clear path to success is not obvious.

37.1% of consumers used a smartphone for local online shopping and 19.4% used a tablet, according to BIA/Kelsey’s Consumer Commerce Monitor (CCM) survey. SMBs are well positioned to take advantage, with 32% of SMBs reporting they use some form of mobile advertising to promote their business, up from 28% in 2012 according to BIA/Kelsey’s Local Commerce Monitor (LCM) survey.

Devices used for local shopping

In BIA/Kelsey’s annual Local Commerce Monitor (LCM) survey on advertising and marketing of small and medium businesses (SMBs), we asked several questions on the satisfaction of the various advertising and marketing choices made. In our new Consumer Commerce Monitor survey, we asked consumers how they find, engage and transact with local-serving businesses, including where they use their mobile devices. For the consumers who use tablets for local shopping, the majority, 90%, do some from home, 21% do so at work, and 17% do so in-store. One-third of tablet users reported using their devices at least once a day for local shopping, with nearly another third using them a few times a week.

Consumers using smartphones, on the other hand, report being far more likely to use their devices for local shopping while out in the world. Nearly 68% reported using their smartphones for local shopping while in store. Nearly 82% of consumers reported using their smartphones at home for local shopping, while 49% use their devices at work. More than 40% of smartphone users reported using their devices at least once a day for local shopping.

One of mobile’s path to success for the small business can be found in payments. SMBs are ready to close the loop with shoppers who use their mobile phones; 40% of SMBs reported accepting payments at the point of sale with a mobile credit card reader attached to a smartphone or tablet, with an additional 16% planning to add this capability in the next 12 months. This in line with consumers’ adoption of mobile payment with 42% of consumers reported having made a payment using a smartphone credit card swipe in the past six months, with over 7% reporting they do so often.

As their customers are using mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets to shop online, SMBs reported going increasingly mobile. 16% of SMBs surveyed reported that mobile was an extremely high future marketing priority for them, and another 21% reported it was a very high priority.

SMBs are still working on success with mobile, but need guidance on effective marketing opportunities.

SMBs going mobile


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2 Comments

2 Comments »

  • Jonathan Trenn said:

    In April of 2012 you had a press release that pointed out that 93.3% of SMBs do not have mobile ready websites. The data above suggest massive adoption. Do you have any current stats on this?

    I’m just thinking that many SMBs are going through trial and error, which could lead to more error…

  • Suzanne Ackley (author) said:

    I believe the press release referred to vSplash’s data, which was a different study that inventories advertising on business digital sites. If you look at the LCM Wave 17 data, adoption is growing but not aggressively.

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