New IDC Research Identifies the Smart(Phone) Shopper – Highly Informed, Social, and Seeking Superior Shopping Experiences

FRAMINGHAM, Mass., January 16, 2014 – In newly released mobile research, International Data Corporation (IDC) found that survey respondents believe the smartphone is transforming the shopping experience. Of those surveyed, 69% agree with the statement, "My smartphone is a critical tool that allows me to have a better shopping experience," compared to only 12% who disagree. Additionally, 70% agree with the statement, "I plan to use my smartphone more to help my shopping experience in the coming year" compared to only 11% of respondents who disagree.

Moreover, the smartphone is enabling shoppers to be more informed and more confident in their shopping decisions, as many consumers reach out to their trusted social networks while shopping. Seven in 10 respondents said they check prices using their smartphones, and five in 10 said they check reviews from their smartphones.

IDC research shows that the Smart(Phone) Shopper may prove challenging to brick-and-mortar retailers. One in five survey respondents bought from a competitor while they were shopping in a retail store this holiday season. One in three respondents indicated they purchased much more online versus in a retail store this year compared to last year.

In addition to the survey, the app and mobile Web activity of over 10,000 smartphone users was analyzed during the holiday shopping season. Among retailers, Amazon dominated, with far more consumers accessing its app, mobile website, or both, than any other retailer. Brick-and-mortar retailers significantly lag behind Amazon when analyzing smartphone users' propensity to use a brand's app and/or visit the mobile website.

"Given Amazon's breadth of products, its reputation for low prices, robust product reviews, and personalized recommendations, it makes sense that Amazon is the leader among smartphone users," noted Danielle Levitas, Group Vice President and General Manager, Mobility, Digital Media and Consumer.

"The smartphone is at the center of our lives, with most of us unable to be without it for even a couple of hours. By combining the insights from both the survey and mobile behavioral data, it is clear that, for a significant number of us, the smartphone is now also a critical shopping tool, our own personal concierge to help us shop intelligently," said Allan Fromen, Vice President and Consulting Partner for IDC's global Buyer Behavior Practice. 

An IDC infographic highlighting results of this Smart(Phone) Shopper research can be found here.

These research findings are based on a survey fielded December 28, 2013 asking respondents about the holiday shopping season. The survey was completed on a smartphone by 511 respondents among the Research Now Mobile™ panel. The research also included an analysis of smartphone behavioral data from November 27 – December 28, 2013. This behavioral data included analysis from over 10,000 smartphone owners who opted in to the Research Now Mobile™ panel.

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About IDC

International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community to make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 1,000 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 100 countries. Since 1964, IDC has provided strategic insights to help our clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company. You can learn more about IDC by visiting