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Majority of Mobile Shoppers Turn To Their Devices Over Store Employees and In-Store Info, According to CEA Study

Arlington, VA – December 2, 2014 – 
More than half (58 percent) of shoppers who use mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets, indicate they prefer to look up information on their devices while shopping, rather than talk to store employees – especially among men and shoppers aged 25-44 - according to a new report released today by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)®. The findings from the report, Enhancing the In-Store CE Retail Experience Using Mobile Devices, were released today at the 2014 ANA Mobile First, Mobile Anywhere event.
Additionally, nearly two-thirds (62 percent) of mobile shoppers indicate they perceive the information they gather via their mobile device as more beneficial than the information available in-store via product displays or sales literature.
“Mobile devices have significantly shifted consumers’ shopping behavior,” said Steve Koenig, director of industry analysis, CEA. “Retailers are increasingly focusing on delivering a complete consumer shopping experience and mobile devices are now a vital piece of that puzzle.”
Top Product Types for Mobile Shoppers
Mobile shoppers most often use their mobile devices for assistance when shopping for electronics (60 percent) than any other product type. Following electronics, mobile shoppers most frequently use their devices while shopping in physical retail stores for groceries (55 percent), apparel (47 percent), shoes (45 percent), and health and beauty products (39 percent). 
While shopping specifically for electronics, mobile shoppers use their devices to compare prices (63 percent), read customer ratings or reviews (52 percent) and search the Internet for more information (51 percent).
Mobile Shopper Device Use
Among those who turn to mobile devices for additional product information while shopping, seven in 10 conduct a general Internet search (69 percent) while half visit a store-specific website (52 percent), use a store-specific app (47 percent) or a visit manufacturer-specific website (46 percent). 
Mobile Shopper Concerns: Privacy and Security
Mobile shoppers indicated they are concerned about privacy (61 percent) and security (58 percent) when using their devices while shopping in-store.
At the same time, they see the benefit of having a relationship with retailers as 81 percent of mobile shoppers indicate they would be willing to share some form of personal data with retailers in exchange for benefits in return. Current GPS location information (48 percent) is the most common type of data mobile shoppers are willing to share, followed by user profile information (46 percent) and personal contact information (40 percent).
“In a very short amount of time, a majority of Americans now own mobile devices and just as quickly, those mobile devices have become the viewfinders of American’s digital lives,” said Shawn DuBravac, Ph.D., chief economist, CEA and author of CEA’s soon-to-be released book Digital Destiny: How the New Age of Data Will Transform the Way We Work, Live, and Communicate. “We are now seeing this trend influence shopping habits, especially among tech purchases. Retailers are beginning to respond to consumers’ shifting habits, and that is especially true this holiday shopping season with increased focus on retailer apps.”
2014 Holiday Mobile Shopping Trends
Consumer use of mobile devices to compare products and prices and find deals from retailers will be more important than ever during the 2014 holiday weekend. According to CEA’s 21st Annual CE Holiday Purchase Patterns Study, two-thirds (67 percent) of consumers who plan to spend money on tech this holiday season are likely to use a mobile device to help them shop. Interestingly, those likely to use mobile devices to help them shop for tech products plan to spend more money on electronics this holiday season.
To view CEA’s full 2014 holiday outlook, visit

CEA’s Enhancing the In-Store CE Retail Experience Using Mobile Devices was designed and formulated by CEA Market Research, the most comprehensive source of sales data, forecasts, consumer research and historical trends for the consumer electronics industry. Please cite any information to the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)®. The complete report is available at no-cost to CEA member companies at Non-members may purchase the study in the CEA Store.
About the Consumer Technology Assocation

The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) is the technology trade association representing the $211 billion U.S. consumer electronics industry. More than 2,000 companies enjoy the benefits of CEA membership, including legislative advocacy, market research, technical training and education, industry promotion, standards development and the fostering of business and strategic relationships. CEA also owns and produces the International CES – The Global Stage for Innovation. All profits from CES are reinvested into CEA’s industry services. Find CEA online at, and through social media.