March 1, 2011, 12:00 AM

Mobile shopping patterns vary based on product category

While consumers are buying electronics, apparel and home goods on their mobile phones, the way they shop differs for each category, Forrester Research says.

Consumers are buying electronics, apparel and home goods through their mobile phones, but there is a significant difference in how likely they are to shop via mobile for each type of product, a new Forrester Research Inc. study finds.

The study, "Mobile Technographics: U.S. Online Shoppers," examined how mobile shoppers in these three product categories research and purchase merchandise and interact with retailers via text messages.

10% of online shoppers have purchased a piece of electronics on an e-commerce site in the past three months, Forrester Research says. Of these shoppers, 15% research electronics products on a mobile device at least once a month and 6% have purchased electronics via mobile. 49% have signed up to receive text message alerts from a retailer.

34% of online shoppers have purchased apparel on an e-commerce site in the past three months. Of these shoppers, 8% research apparel products on a mobile device at least once a month and 3% have purchased apparel via a mobile device. 43% have signed up to receive text message alerts from a retailer.

5% of online shoppers have purchased home goods on an e-commerce site in the past three months. Of these shoppers, 9% have done research via mobile and 5% have made purchases. 36% receive text message alerts from retailers.

"Consumers' spending on products and services via mobile devices, as well as their increasing reliance on them for product research, is intensifying the mobile imperative for retailers," writes Julie A. Ask, vice president and principal analyst at Forrester Research and author of the report.

bill@verticalwebmedia.com

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