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BizReport : Ecommerce archives : April 15, 2014

Mobile plays significant role in the shopping habits of Boomers and Seniors

Businesses that do not recognize the increasing numbers of older Boomers and Seniors that are involved in mobile shopping are missing out on a growing demographic that wields huge purchasing power, according to a recent survey from the Local Search Association conducted by Thrive Analytics.

by Helen Leggatt

In their "Local Mobile Trends Study", the Local Search Association reveals that mobile isn't just for youngsters. More and more people over the age of 54 (older Boomers and Seniors) are using mobile when out shopping in physical stores.

Of the 1,058 smartphone users surveyed, more than two-thirds (69%) of Boomers and Seniors said they used their device, if only occasionally, to seek out deals, make price comparisons and check out reviews while they are shopping in a physical store. Among Gen Y shoppers that figure rises to 97%.

Furthermore, 37% of older Boomers and Seniors were not averse to leaving a store and going elsewhere to shop based on the information they find on their smartphone.

"Boomers and Seniors are catching up to their Gen Y and Gen X counterparts in their use of mobile throughout the local shopping experience," says Neg Norton, president, Local Search Association. "Businesses that fail to recognize the strong and growing prevalence of mobile usage by older generations will miss out on an opportunity to reach this large demographic with huge purchasing power."

Another interesting finding relates to whether or not people feel guilty for using their mobile in a physical store and hiding their mobile usage from store staff. While 8% of Gen Y and 10% of Gen X said they would hide their mobile usage in-store, older Boomers and Seniors were less concerned (6%).

Earlier this year, a UK survey by retail technology firm Omnico found that just 37% of those aged between 18 and 24 admit to showrooming compared to 50% of those aged between 55 and 59.

Tags: Boomer, bricks-and-mortar, ecommerce, mcommerce, mobile, retail, shopping, showrooming

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