Shoppers are increasingly mobile, offering new opportunities for mobile advertisers

Consumers are using their mobile devices to check product reviews before purchasing them in-store. According to research from brand awareness firm Yieldbot, in collaboration with Kantar Retail, mobile advertising may have a larger influence on purchase decisions than previously thought. Though word of mouth through family and friends is still the most effective advertising, mobile ads may be just as influential and even outperform brand sources and social media information.

The survey of 1,202 consumers found that many shoppers aren’t necessarily having a product in mind which leaves them open for offers from marketers and brands. Indeed, 19% of shoppers decide on a product in-store, whilst 15% had more than a single product in mind to decide in store and 3% may be sure about a product only to change their minds later.

Whilst consumers tend to be mobile for a wide variety of product categories, from baby products to alcohol, most start thinking about their purchase two to three days before making a decision. Final choices are also made rather quickly, which doesn’t leave brands or retailers a lot of room to reach consumers and change their minds.

Mobile devices are predominantly used to complete specific tasks, such as searching for coupons, comparing prices of products, asking family or friends for advice and looking up product ingredients or reviews. For retailers and brands, that means information and engagements must cater to solve those needs. Unanswered questions can cost customers.

Interestingly, half of consumers would leave a store if they forgot their phone, as it offers value to their shopping experience. Within the baby products and alcohol categories, shoppers use their mobile devices in-store to make sure they’re getting the lowest prices and the best value.

That means, showrooming may be slowing down for brands. Product research in store is a core task for many shoppers, whilst only some use their devices to buy products online and not in store.

So how do advertisers reach consumers? Relevancy is key. Indeed, 40% of past in-store purchasers remembered a mobile advert. Whilst banner ads can help to create awareness and offer information such as product pricing, native text ads are better for re-engagement and video ads are used across all stages of engagement.