New Apps & Mobile Devices Drive Cyber Shopping Decisions off the Couch and Back into Stores

WSL/Strategic Retail Unveils Key Findings of New Buzz to Buy 2.0 Report

NEW YORK--()--New shopping apps, mobile technologies and social media rewards are moving buying decisions back into the stores, according to WSL/Strategic Retail, the leading authority on shopper behavior and retail trends. The finding was revealed today as part of the Company’s Buzz to Buy 2.0 trend report, its second annual survey measuring how the power of Social Media and online information are impacting buying decisions.

“For the first time in many years, retailers are getting ahead of the trend, and the shopper, by introducing new mobile apps that create fun, entertaining and promotion-driven experiences at the malls and in the stores,” said Wendy Liebmann, CEO of WSL/Strategic Retail. “By using mobile technology to access flash offers, search best deals and earn rewards shoppers are, once again, able to make purchase decisions in-store, rather than online at home.”

Candace Corlett, President of WSL/Strategic Retail continued, “The savviest retailers are using mobile technology to maximize shopper engagement at every point of contact. Integrating it into sales service, providing Facebook and Twitter followers with exclusive ‘member-only’ rewards, and creating apps that are both exciting and efficient are the new keys to driving traffic and sales at retail.”

Significant findings of the report include:

  • Smartphones get shoppers off the couch. Approximately half of all smartphone owners use their device while shopping in-store. This finding is up 21 percentage points from last year’s survey, and has become a significant game changer in the way retailers do business. More than half of those who use mobile for shopping are comparing prices (56%), taking pictures of products (53%), and finding coupons and discounts (46%).
  • Shopping: There’s an App for that. Shopping apps now rank among the top five categories downloaded, with nearly half (46%) of those who download apps choosing a shopping related one. Even better news for retailers, shopping apps are now being used in stores by shoppers looking to receive in-store alerts to deals and sales (35%), reading QR codes or bar codes for product information (33%), and helping to navigate the store (28%).
  • I’ll “like” it for a reward. Shoppers expect to find deals and rewards when they “like” a brand or store on Social Networking Sites (SNS) such as Facebook and Twitter. Members searching for discounts or coupons increased 31% over last year’s findings, while those looking to gain exclusive member-only benefits rose by 50%. In contrast, the percentage of those using SNS to search for product information and reviews remained flat (at a mere 14%).

WSL/Strategic Retail draws several conclusions from the study as to the strategic actions retailers must take to remain relevant to shoppers' changing perceptions. For more information or to purchase the report, please call 212.924.7780 or email

Notes on Survey Methodology and Analysis

WSL/Strategic Retail conducted an internet survey from September 8-12, 2011. The survey included 1,702 respondents recruited from an online panel of shoppers 15 and over. All participants are active internet users – they have done at least one online shopping or social networking activity within the past month.

About WSL/Strategic Retail

Founded in 1986, WSL/Strategic Retail (“WSL”) is the leading authority on shopper behavior and retail trends. Through its unparalleled research, global trend analysis and customized consulting services, WSL arms retailers, manufacturers and brands with the tools required to stay ahead of the market and motivate shoppers to purchase. The Company tracks the mindset, attitude and behavior that shape shopper trends, and predicts how they transform brands and retailers throughout the U.S. For more information, visit


Berns Communications Group, LLC
Melissa Jaffin / Joy Murphy, 212-994-4660


Berns Communications Group, LLC
Melissa Jaffin / Joy Murphy, 212-994-4660