When Is A Mobile Not A Mobile (& What Is A Mobile, Anyway)?
Analytics regarding “mobiles” as a category have always annoyed the hell out of me.

Everyone knows that a smartphone and tablet are used very differently so why lump them together?

Towards the end of last year at the US Direct Marketing Association’s Annual Conference, even Mike Becker, then head of US Mobile Marketing Association, agreed that the term “mobile” is not particularly helpful.

Which was the reason behind us differentiating between the devices in CASzine Digital Publishing analytics since the beginning of this year.

So it was with some relief that we read the most recent research from Nielsen dissecting their use, pointing to how and where the different devices are used - A MOBILE SHOPPER’S JOURNEY: FROM THE COUCH TO THE STORE (AND BACK AGAIN) (Ironically, the title is really the only place where the two devices are grouped together.)

In terms of what they are used for, tablet users are more active than smartphone users in pre-purchase product searching (59%) and much more likely to purchase with them (38% v 24%).

Of course, for those “mobile shoppers” that shop in a store the smartphone is the in-store device they prefer with 37% using them for shopping lists (70% have also used a store locator on their smartphone to get there).

But as to where the device of choice is used a staggering 95% of tablet and 72% of smartphone shoppers who make a purchase do so in the home.

So, for this activity, a mobile is actually more likely to be “stationery”!

That a growing number of customers (20%+) are choosing to have a 04 prefix “home” phone* makes it more likely that this device will undergo a name change in the near future.

Perhaps then we’ll start talking about the process from the perspective of the customer and not the device.

“Connected shoppers”, anyone?

*Roy Morgan Research, 1 August, 2013.
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