/// Mobile Thursday? Smartphone Shopping Is Still Tiny, But It’s This Year’s Big Online Buzzword
In what has become an annual holiday tradition, those who keep track of these things have started in on touting just how digital the holiday shopper has become, whipping out all manner of buzzwords to do so. Last year, it was Cyber Monday — this year, it’s turned out to be Mobile Thursday. What’s next? Social Network Saturday? Self-Driving Car Sunday? (We still have Black Friday, by the way, which is today.) And, indeed, the phrase got some big laps around the track, with numerous online shopping surveys — coming out faster than you can buy that new tablet — using it in their flash reports yesterday and today. This year’s anecdotal meme: Apple iPads go well with pumpkin pie. What isn’t said so much is that it is still a very small number — though fast-growing — over the last few years, with overall sales reaching $500 million for Thursday compared to about $1.2 billion on Monday, according to comScore. Still, for now, no one seems to break out actual mobile sales figures, which are clearly still a fraction of the totals. But they are more than happy to tell you that people are certainly browsing on their mobile devices, which should come as a surprise to exactly no one who is tired of talking to the relatives about three hours into the day. According to IBM’s Benchmark report, for example, online sales were up 17.4 percent over 2011 on Thanksgiving Day, noting “big winners were retailers who connected customers with personalized deals across multiple screens including PCs, smartphones and tablets.” Some stats from IBM about Thursday: Mobile Traffic: The number of consumers using a mobile device to visit a retailer’s site reached 25.3 percent, up from 66.2 percent over 2011. Mobile Shopping: The number of consumers using their mobile device to make a purchase increased to 18.3 percent, up 65.3 percent from 2011. Mobile Email: Smartphone and tablet shoppers responded to email deals from retailers, with emails opened on mobile devices jumping 23 percent on Thanksgiving Day over 2011. Couch Commerce: In the evening hours, consumers shifted from shopping through their smartphones at the dinner table to buying through their iPad on the couch.