Men wearing blue sweater and eyeglasses holding credit card and using smart phone at home office during christmas holidays

Mobile Continues to Shape the Future of Retail

By Patricia Houston, VP-Client Relationships

The research industry has been aware of – and designing for – the unintentional mobile user for several years. With 77 percent of all consumers carrying smartphones, the pervasiveness of mobile has the ability to impact nearly all areas of our lives.¹ One area that mobile has already affected, retail, is of particular interest to us here at MMR since we partner with several companies in this space.

Much has been written about eCommerce’s rise and the doom of brick-and-mortar, but online sales have yet to grow past 10 percent of total retail sales according to the National Retail Federation.² Stores remain relevant, but the dominance of the mobile screen will impact behavior in different ways. During this holiday shopping season, we recap two ways in which mobile will impact the future of retail beyond growing the share of online sales.


Mobile Optimized User Experience Is No Longer “Optional”

While online shopping might not be growing holistically, the share of mobile purchases within online is. Black Friday 2017 was a tipping point for mobile purchases; it was the first Black Friday where fewer than half of online orders were made using a desktop/laptop according to data compiled by Salesforce.³ Optimizing the mobile user experience can increase conversion, and Google’s Principles of Mobile Site Design report has some great examples and guidelines.

retail infographic 1 - Dec 8 17


Mobile’s Influence in Physical Retail Will Grow, But How?

It’s no surprise that a majority of consumers are consulting mobile devices prior to making an in-store purchase. Google reported this significant shopper trend in 2016. But are consumers embracing other in-store mobile technologies pushed by retailers?

To find out, we asked shoppers across three categories what they thought of some emerging in-store technologies enabled by smartphones. Results from our Retail Technology Concept Screening Study show moderate/niche consumer interest, and indicate that retailers do not need to rush to implement these types of solutions. Instead, take a consumer-centric approach to new in-store technology by first determining what fits your shopper’s needs and your business goals.  

retail infographic 2 - Dec 8 17



About the MMR Retail Technology Concept Screening Study

The MMR Retail Technology Concept Screening Study was conducted in July 2017 and includes responses from 918 consumers. We used our flexible Concept Factory method to screen 28 concepts covering in-store technology, payment, delivery, and in-store assistance. Results were available rapidly; 48 hours from field to topline. More detailed results from the study are available including demographic subgroup cuts. Please contact us to learn more.


About MMR Research Associates, Inc.

A passionate team of forward thinking experts who provide customized, decision-focused marketing research. Since 1999, clients have relied on the well-tenured team at MMR to design and execute versatile, tailored solutions that shape business direction, and inspire confidence.