Study: Shoppers use smartphones, social media for purchase decisions

New York City -- The Deloitte American Pantry Study, released Tuesday, polled more than 4,000 shoppers and found that, more than ever, consumers are turning to social networks, smartphones, and tablets to meet their shopping needs.

According to the study, 90% of shoppers know what they’re buying before they arrive at a store. Three-quarters say they are smarter shoppers than they were a year ago, and 86% believe they are getting more precise in what they buy.

“With the proliferation of online shopping, smartphones and social networking, it’s vital that consumer product companies consider the use of highly targeted pre-store shopper engagement programs, which could include constant communication through new technology mediums,” said Pat Conroy, Deloitte’s consumer products sector leader.

According to Deloitte, there are three ways that brands can engage shoppers via social networks and smartphones:

  • Become part of the planning process by embracing personalized mobile applications aimed at enhancing the pre-store planning process, and utilizing personalized mobile advertising and promotions that provide a route to consumers considering products;
  •  Enhance in-store mobile and social networking experiences; and
  • Extend the product involvement to maintain post-purchase conversations. There are several benefits to extending the product experience across channels and away from home, said Conroy, including maintaining and growing brand awareness and consideration among existing customers.