Source: eMarketer, MAY 21, 2013
Clothing and beauty were top mobile shopping categories
There is no question that mobile is becoming an essential shopping tool for many US moms. According to a March 2013 survey from retail solutions company Alliance Data, more than half of surveyed mom internet users reported using their smartphone or tablet at least weekly for some aspect of shopping, whether it be research or buying. And 35% of respondents said they used their device daily for shopping purposes.
Mobile’s usefulness for shopping is easy to see. Convenience and a better ability to price compare were the top reasons moms’ reported using their device as they moved through the purchase funnel.
Clothing and beauty ranked as the top product categories for which moms shopped on their smartphones and tablets, at 56% and 47%, respectively. Households products ranked third, researched by 42% of respondents, a significant figure for CPG brands, which have already moved quickly into the mobile advertising space.
Showrooming—the practice of going into stores to compare products and prices, often using mobile to shop around—is common among moms, as well. At both electronics and big-box retailers, half of mom mobile shoppers surveyed said they used their smartphone or tablet to look up product and price info. This was slightly less common at clothing, grocery and shoe stores, but more than one-third of respondents still had shopped at each of these locations using mobile devices.
However, mobile is not the primary method US moms prefer for shopping. Only 11% of respondents said this was the shopping method they would choose, if given only one option. And according to December 2012 research from parenting app company Alt12, about two-thirds of moms said they did less than half of their shopping on mobile.
But as mobile browsing becomes more common, and retailers improve their multichannel efforts, there is no question that more moms will favor smartphones and tablets for their shopping and buying.
Source: eMarketer, MAY 15, 2013
Mobile web and apps get most investment
Spending on mobile marketing keeps rising, as brands learn the power of reaching consumers on these devices, and consumers become increasingly mobile-first.
The Mobile Marketing Association (MMA), in partnership with IHS Global Insight, studied US mobile marketing expenditures and their impact on sales for the “Mobile Marketing Impact Study,” released in May. The study found that this year spending on mobile marketing—including mobile advertising, mobile customer-relationship management and mobile direct-response marketing on nonmobile media—will reach $10.46 billion. By 2015, spending on the channel will approach $20 billion.
That spending will translate to an economywide impact of $216.9 billion in sales in 2013, according to the MMA’s projections, rising to $401 billion in sales in 2015, a ratio of about $1 in mobile spending to $20 in sales, also known as the marketing impact ratio (MIR). The study noted the seeming lack of diminishing returns for mobile investment. As companies spent more money on mobile marketing, their MIR did not decrease.
Mobile advertising accounts for the biggest share of total mobile marketing spending, at just under 50% of expenditures this year, or $4.87 billion—a share that will hold relatively steady through 2015. eMarketer estimates higher US mobile ad spending, projected to reach $7.3 billion this year.
There is no question that as mobile and tablet advertising help companies achieve their brand goals, and thereby drive sales, it is spurring bigger outlays. InsightExpress found that in 2013, mobile and tablet advertising got strong results across brand health metrics, raising ad awareness, purchase intent and brand favorability. Tablets performed particularly well.
Breaking down how companies are apportioning their mobile advertising dollars, the mobile web will see the greatest share of money spent, as brands work to mobile-optimize their sites. In 2013, the MMA predicts companies will invest $3.16 billion in the mobile web, translating to about two-thirds of spending. By 2015, that share will drop down to 58%, as mobile apps get significantly more investment.
Dollars spent on mobile apps will rise by 158% between 2013 and 2015, according to the MMA, to reach $3.26 billion in spending in 2015.
Source: eMarketer, APR 11, 2013
Apps are gaining share of local searches
Mobile internet users reach for their devices to route their trip home, read reviews of local restaurants and find the location of a nearby business. And as more consumers convert to smartphones and tablets, the number of local searches is rising fast.
Between April and December 2012, comScore conducted a study on behalf of 15miles and Neustar Localeze and asked mobile phone and tablet users about their search activity. In conjunction with comScore’s analysis of total and local web search activity, and local mobile content consumption, the study found that in only eight months, the number of overall US searches on mobile phones and tablets rose 21%. Total searches totaled 113.1 million for mobile phones and 38.7 million for tablets in December 2012.
And of those conducting searches, many are seeking out local information.
By December 2012, comScore found that nearly 86 million people searched for information on local businesses via mobile, a 25% increase over the beginning of the eight-month period. More than half of these mobile local searchers said they researched on the devices because they were on the go and needed immediate information.
This is not to say that local search has wholly moved onto mobile devices. 15miles’ study found that the majority of PC local searches were conducted at the beginning of the search path. But another one-third of searches on PCs happened throughout the information-gathering process.
Mobile phones and tablets, meanwhile, were more evenly split in the percentage of searches that happened at the beginning of and throughout the search process. Where mobile phones and tablets really showed their specific utility was in the share of local searches that ended on the devices—18% for each, compared with 4% of PC searches.
It’s notable that while tablets are increasingly seen as at-home rather than on-the-go devices, for local business searches, activity was very similar to mobile phones.
Apps are also becoming a more popular means of conducting local searches, a further indication of mobile’s growing role in local search. 15miles found that the number of app-based local searches nearly doubled in the past two years.
What are local searchers looking for via those apps?
Getting directions was a prime app search activity on mobile devices. Google Maps was the No. 1 app used for local searches on phones and tablets, at 35% and 25%, respectively. Interestingly, Facebook’s app ranked second on both devices. Bing led the general search engine apps, with 17% using the portal on mobile phones and tablets.
Again, on apps as well, local search activity on mobile phones and tablets continued to mirror each other somewhat closely.
In terms of the features users want on local business search sites, address, phone number, hours of operation, maps and directions ranked high across PCs and mobile devices.
Interestingly, compared with the PC, more consumers on tablets and mobile phones wanted to see ratings and reviews on local business search sites. This is likely because on mobile devices, users want to do the least amount of clicking. They want reviews front and center when they conduct a search. Similarly, respondents gave precedence to seeing promos and online discounts on local search sites on mobile devices over PCs.
But perhaps what makes local search the most critical to businesses: conversion—especially on mobile. Around 77% of those who conducted a local search on either a mobile phone or tablet went on to make a purchase either in-store, online or over the phone. A lesser, but still notable, 59% of local PC searchers also converted.
Here are 15 stats that all brands should know about mobile.
The U.S. is at 101 percent wireless penetration. (CTIA)
1 billion smartphones will be shipped globally this year. (Gartner)
Apple beats all other phone manufacturers in customer satisfaction for smartphones. (J.D. Power and Associates)
59 percent of mobile users are as comfortable with mobile advertising as they are with TV and online ads. (InMobi)
85 percent of mobile users prefer mobile apps over the mobile Web. (Compuware)
75 percent of Americans bring their phones to the bathroom. (11 Mark)
15 percent have answered their mobile phone while having sex. (Wilson Electronics)
Mobile advertising revenue is expected to reach over $11 billion worldwide this year, up from over $9 billion last year. (Gartner)
Mobile drives 23 percent of paid-search clicks. (The Search Agency)
Americans spend an average of 158 minutes every day on their smartphones and tablets. (Flurry)
15 percent of mobile users prefer to check financial accounts on smartphones and tablets. (Quicken)
42 percent of consumers using a mobile device while in-store spend more than $1,000. (Interactive Advertising Bureau)
Mobile now accounts for 12 percent of Americans’ media consumption time, triple its share in 2009. (eMarketer)
39 percent of mobile users access social networks from their phones. (Business Insider)
Mobile commerce will account for 15 percent of total e-commerce sales this year. (eMarketer)
Source: eMarketer, FEB 20, 2013
Advertisers are leveraging mobile location and context data to better target consumers
Back in 2010, when Steve Jobs declared “mobile advertising sucks,” mobile advertisers’ options were largely restricted to static banners that in Jobs’ words failed to “engage and deliver emotion.”
While the static banner is still widely available and used, advertisers looking to engage mobile consumers on a more emotional level now have a menu of formats to choose from, according to a new eMarketer report, “Mobile Display Ad Types: Move Over Banner Ads, You’ve Got Company.”
eMarketer estimates US advertisers will spend $2.2 billion on mobile display advertising in 2013 and diversify investments across a wider range of ad formats.
What differentiates mobile ad formats is their ability to leverage the unique capabilities of the devices. Sensors can provide insight into the location and context in which consumers are using their smartphone or tablet, enabling a brand to increase the relevancy of its message. And touchscreen, camera, text messaging and other phone features offer multiple ways for a brand to engage the consumer.
The popularity of one mobile ad format over another has less to do with available inventory than with ease of use, scalability and the targeting capabilities associated with the format.
Facebook’s and Twitter’s mobile ad formats score high marks in all three areas and are becoming increasingly popular with both performance and brand advertisers as a result. Big-box retailer Wal-Mart, for example, deployed 50 million mobile ads through Facebook over Thanksgiving weekend to prime the 2012 holiday shopping season. In the spectrum of mobile ad formats, Facebook and Twitter ads stand out because their organic nature helps brands become a part of the content experience.
The demand for mobile video ads is also rising fast, encouraged by increased mobile video viewing, and mobile users’ preference for ad-supported streaming video content.
In addition to in-stream video, an expandable rich media banner ad that opens to what feels like an embedded website with a video player and interactive features is becoming an increasingly popular way for marketers to tell their story.
“We are doing more and more rich media ads, but we think it’s still an untapped market,” said Brian Colbert, vice president of mobile advertising sales for Pandora. “Whether you’re leveraging GPS functionality in maps or calendar functionality, you can do so much with the phones from a rich media perspective.”
Despite the increased availability and enthusiasm for more immersive and interactive ad formats, the direct-response focus among mobile advertisers is one reason static ad formats remain popular. For advertisers trying to drive immediate conversions, the static banner provides an affordable and scalable means of linking mobile users to an app store or a web storefront, or to trigger a phone call or text message, all of which can generate leads or sales.
The improvements in mobile ad inventory are one of the most important factors influencing pricing. Brand advertisers are paying premium rates to deliver immersive mobile experiences with rich media and mobile video formats. And overlaying targeting parameters can drive prices up further. Industry organizations such as the MMA and the IAB are creating mobile ad standards to facilitate the development and buying of these newer format types, which, given time, may ease prices of rich media and video formats.