African American, Hispanic Shoppers Adopt Shopping Technologies at a Faster Rate than Caucasians

U.S. smartphone penetration is nearing 50%, so it's no surprise that the adoption of mobile shopping tools has been rapid. African Americans and Hispanics are adopting new shopping technologies at a faster rate than Caucasians, with 18% of African American shoppers and 16% of Hispanic shoppers using their mobile device to make purchases as compared to 10% of Caucasians. This was revealed in the latest issue of "The Checkout," an ongoing shopper behavior study conducted by The Integer Group and M/​A/​R/​C Research. 

One in five African American shoppers (21% versus 13% of Caucasian shoppers) use their phone to read product reviews and maintain shopping lists and one in five Hispanic shoppers (20% versus 13% of Caucasian shoppers) use their mobile device to compare prices on products. Despite smartphone penetration skewing lower among African Americans and Hispanics than Caucasians, both are leading the charge by using mobile as a means to access the digital world of shopping aids.

"Basic mobile communication through SMS and mobile websites should be the points of entry. Mobile marketing to multicultural shoppers is a huge opportunity," said Martin Ferro, senior account planner for Velocidad, a Hispanic promotional, retail and shopper marketing capability of The Integer Group.

Additional findings on mobile shopping from The Checkout:

  • Almost as many shoppers are using coupons from email and e‑newsletters (49%) as they are from the Sunday paper (57%).
  • Men might be the traditional lovers of tech toys, but when it comes to using technology to enhance shopping, women are ahead of the curve.
  • Having children in the household drives accelerated adoption of digital technologies to deliver shopping solutions for busy moms and dads.

"Digital shoppers are just shoppers," said Ben Kennedy, group director of Mobile Marketing at Integer. "Digital shopping tools are illustrative of the continued blurring of the on- and offline spaces. Today's reality is that shoppers use whatever tools they have on hand to make them smarter, savvier shoppers."

[Source:  "The Checkout."  The Integer Group and M/​A/​R/​C Research.  22 June 2012.  Web.  24 June 2012.]