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Grocery shoppers ready to embrace mobile apps, but only if they save time and money

By Elaine WATSON , 17-Apr-2014
Last updated on 17-Apr-2014 at 16:41 GMT

Catalina: Shoppers don’t want to search through a long list of random coupons for products they never buy
Catalina: Shoppers don’t want to search through a long list of random coupons for products they never buy

The good news? Two-thirds of primary household shoppers who own smartphones have used their mobile devices on a shopping trip. The bad news? Most of them were not bowled over by the experience.

According to a nationwide survey of 1,000 smartphone owners and primary grocery shoppers conducted by personalized digital media company Catalina and market research firm InsightsNow, what shoppers want in a mobile shopping app is to save time and money.   

However, many applications - there are more than 1,000 shopping apps for the iPhone alone - are not delivering savings or efficiencies, said Greg Stucky, chief research officer with InsightsNow.

The top barrier to consumers using shopping apps is that apps tend to slow down the trip versus speeding it up.”

An integrated, seamless experience

And while some apps are great at specific tasks such as recipe creation, coupon collection, budgeting and shopping list development, few apps integrate multiple features into one seamless experience, said Todd Morris, EVP of corporate development and marketing, Catalina.

“Retailers need to deliver an application that can translate a shopper’s preferences into relevant content that will enhance their experience by saving them time and money on items they actually want.

“To achieve this, retailers and brands must combine feature-rich shopping applications with an understanding of shopper preferences, purchase history and more.”

According to mobile shoppers, the most desired features in a mobile commerce app are: 

  • Digital coupons
  • Real-time coupons
  • Shopping list reminders
  • Ability to track spending 

 The least desired features are:

  • Social media integration
  • Receipt imagery
  • Generic geo-location notifications

Shoppers don’t want to search through a long list of random coupons for products they never buy

Shoppers want applications that deliver coupons and savings, but they expect them to deliver those benefits in an “intelligent and personalized way,” says Catalina.

“They don’t want to search through a long list of random coupons for products they never buy. Coupon delivery should take place based on current shopping lists or past purchases. And list creation itself should be automated based on purchasing history.

“Applying geo-location to mobile apps will bring value and excitement to shoppers when it‘s applied to coupons and real-time savings. Providing coupons on items that are on your shopping list when you enter the store or on items that you frequently buy will be well-received.”  

Click HERE to read about research InsightsNow has conducted into what consumers are really looking for when they need an energy boost.

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