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Mobile shopping behaviour: insights into attitudes, shopping process involvement and location

Alastair Holmes (Vodafone, Newbury, UK)
Angela Byrne (Manchester Metropolitan University Business School, Manchester, UK)
Jennifer Rowley (Information and Communications, Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester, UK)

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management

ISSN: 0959-0552

Article publication date: 1 January 2014




Although there is evidence that adoption of mobile shopping has been slow, the increased functionality offered by smart phones offers significant potential for the development of marketing and retailing through the mobile channel. The purpose of this paper is to add to knowledge on consumer shopping behaviour through mobile devices by exploring attitudes to the use of mobiles in shopping, the use of mobile phones at different stages in the consumer decision-making process, the impact of involvement on the mobile consumer decision-making process and mobile shopping location.


An online panel survey was conducted with a UK panel of nationally representative consumers. The survey collected data in respect of the following products that were ranked on level of involvement on the basis of the importance and effort consumers' associated with their purchase: bread (lowest), washing powder, DVD, footwear, phone and TV (highest).


Use of mobiles for shopping is significant, but remains lower than use of computers in shopping. In general, respondents were more positive regarding their use of computer shopping than they were in relation to their use of a mobile. In using their mobile phone in shopping, respondents value its convenience and accessibility. There is higher use of the mobile phone in the information search and consideration of alternatives phases, than in the purchase transaction. The extent of use of mobile devices in the decision-making process is higher with higher involvement products, in relation to all stages in the decision-making process. The most frequent location for the use of their mobile in shopping is at home, which is consistent with the finding that the highest level of use of mobiles occurs in the information search and consideration of alternatives phases. Recommendations are offered for retailers and for further research.


This is the first research to explore the use of mobile phones in different stages in the consumer-decision-making process across a number of product categories.



Holmes, A., Byrne, A. and Rowley, J. (2014), "Mobile shopping behaviour: insights into attitudes, shopping process involvement and location", International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, Vol. 42 No. 1, pp. 25-39.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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