Long lines prompt smartphone users to abandon in-store purchases, survey finds


BOSTON — A survey sponsored by in-store commerce provider AisleBuyer found that nearly 40% of smartphone-carrying shoppers have abandoned their in-store purchases because of long lines, while 21% will abandon their purchases if there are no registers open.

“Mobile Shopping Survey Series, Part 1: Mobile Self-Service” asked more than 1,000 U.S. in-store shoppers with smartphones to share details about their retail shopping experiences. The survey also found that many smartphone-carrying shoppers "hate waiting in line," including more than half at grocery stores (52%) and at mass merchants (51%). Meanwhile, drug stores, quick service restaurants and club stores were ranked at 29%, 27% and 26%, respectively.

Other key data points from the survey include:

  • 64% of those surveyed expressed interest in scanning products from a store’s aisle using their smartphone to get such additional information as pricing, product reviews, nutritional information, related products, etc.;

  • 36% already have scanned items for more information using their smartphone; and

  • 60% of smartphone-carrying shoppers said they would use their mobile phone to pay during an in-store shopping trip if it meant they didn’t have to wait in line.

"Having to waiting in line at a store has a significant effect on a retailer’s bottom line," AisleBuyer CEO Andrew Paradise said. "Nearly half of shoppers said if a line is too long they will either leave the store without purchasing anything or only buy the few items they came for, without shopping the rest of the store. Giving these shoppers another way to pay — without having to wait in line — will increase the likelihood that they will ultimately purchase something in the store, rather than abandon the purchase due to frustration. The survey results clearly show that shoppers are interested in this alternative checkout experience — something savvy retailers are investing in as we speak.”

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