“Developed internet markets like the US, Canada and UK are now mobile-first in terms of digital consumer behavior”, according to ComScore’s Global Mobile Report. The report also notes that “millennials are the most mobile” with over 60% of their online time spent on a mobile device – and the majority of it on a smartphone.
Their time is not all squandered on watching cat videos or Netflix downloads either, as mobile search influences their buying decisions. According to Deloitte, 64 cents of every dollar spent in retail stores is influenced by digital. The majority of those dollars are driven by mobile search, a number that is growing incredibly quickly. “Mobile influence on in-store sales jumped to nearly $1.0 trillion from just $0.16 trillion in 2012”, Deloitte reports.
“People rely on their phones to help make the best decisions at the moment of purchase”, according to research by Google. “In fact, 70% of smartphone owners who bought something in a store first turned to their devices for information relevant to that purchase”, Google states.
Clearly mobile plays an important role when it comes to purchasing decisions. But many systems for testing new product ideas don’t allow for mobile testing. Does that make sense, given how important mobile is in the real world?
A Blast From the Past
The standard approach to testing ideas has been to show people a paragraph or two of text combined with a picture or illustration. This has its roots in the early days of the industry when most surveys were done face to face, and interviewers would show consumers an 8 ½ by 11 piece of paper with the concept on it. When the world went online, concept testing reluctantly and slowly evolved with it. And the 8 ½ by 11 piece of paper transitioned as well, now appearing as an image that people could read on their desktops. However, that image does not come across so well on a mobile device, as it ends up being too small.
Not wanting to change their methods and potentially risk changing their important norms, many companies stayed the course and ignored mobile – probably hoping it would just go away. But, it hasn’t. In fact, 20-40% of all surveys are completed on mobile devices and that number is even higher among Millennials and Gen Z. We can’t afford to ignore this fact, but neither can we afford to switch to a method that might change the results.
A Mobile Method that Works
At Maru/Matchbox we developed a method of presenting ideas or concepts on a mobile device that does not change the results. Our testing of mobile-friendly study vs a desktop-only sample produced the same findings. It did, however, result in a higher response rate and a much lower drop-out rate, because it was mobile-friendly. Equivalent results, higher response and less dropout – that’s a market research trifecta.
To learn more about this research and how we can help make your concepts mobile friendly, download our whitepaper – Big Ideas on a Small Screen: Evidence of the Importance of Testing Concepts on a Mobile Device.