IAB Report: Mobile, Digital Shopping Habits Differ Between Age Groups

IAB Report Mobile, Digital Shopping Habits Differ Between Age GroupsNot every age group operates the same way when it comes to digital shopping excursions.

While people in the 18 to 34 year old cohort focus on smartphones for retail activity, their parents (ages 35-54) primarily prefer tablets.

Turns out those younger shoppers are also interested in digital browsing, but often buying in a competitor’s store or hitting an online buy button.

These distinctions — representing extremely helpful information for marketers — are encapsulated in a recent study by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB).

The “IAB Digital Shopping Report,” a custom IAB analysis of Prosper Insight data, also illustrates that younger adults are more likely to read a product review on their smartphones (44 percent vs. 32 percent general population) and less likely to do so on tablets (32 percent). “They’re also inclined to check prices on a smartphone (42 percent vs. 33 percent general population) and are less likely to do so on a tablet (32 percent),” reports the IAB. “Those who are 35-54 are more prone to use tablets to read product reviews, locate stores, check store hours, and check product pricing (40 percent vs. 35 percent general population).

The widest gap between phone and tablet is in the consumers 65+ group. These people are more than twice as likely to make a purchase on a tablet (26 percent) than on a smartphone (11 percent). And they’re twice as likely to read a product review on a tablet (31 percent) than on a smartphone (17 percent).

“The use of digital and mobile devices as a core component of the shopping experience occurs slightly differently by age groups,” said Sherrill Mane, Senior Vice President, Research, Analytics, and Measurement, IAB. “If marketers and retailers want to reach the right audiences at the right time in the purchase cycle, they are going to need to understand these distinctions.”

It could be especially critical in the busiest shopping season of the year.

“With the holiday shopping season in full swing, consumers are turning to smartphones and tablets throughout the gift-buying process,” said Anna Bager, Senior Vice President and General Manger, Mobile and Video, IAB. “This report spotlights contrasts in how different generations shop on digital — significant differences that need to be considered in brand marketers’ strategies.”

The “IAB Digital Shopping Report” can be downloaded here.