Surveys reveal interesting trends in smartphone use

Mobile ads are getting noticed… but which types gain the most attention? A recent survey has some answers. Plus, half of consumers say smartphones are their life. SNEWS has the insight.

Smartphones are here to stay. Not only here to stay but the life blood of many people. Research is starting to take a look at what's going on.

Mobile ads are getting noticed…but which types?

According to a May 24, 2011, release of a new mobile platform survey called Mobile Audience Guide (MAG), 60 percent of consumers are likely to click on mobile ads at least once per week. When seeing an ad, half of those surveyed indicated that they would play a game, download an application, or visit a website after seeing an ad – but only 22 percent said they would make a purchase and only 40 percent would download a coupon.

The MAG revealed results from a two-month end-user study of mobile ad interaction. In March and April 2011, Mojiva ( and InsightExpress, a digital marketing research firm, polled more than 100 users who indicated that mobile ads relating to retail stores, weather, dining and sports resonated well.

Additionally, the survey found that graphic ads were sufficient in capturing attention. More than 84 percent of those responding to the survey indicated normal banner ads, video ads, ads that let me interact with them, or animated banner ads were the forms of marketing they would most likely pay attention to.

Text ads only grabbed 13 percent of the attention and, beware of the screen takeover ads -- only 2 percent of those responding found them an acceptable form of advertising.

And, finally, marketing offers related to magazines, social/dating, airlines, traffic and banking registered the least effective performance when it came to clicking through and paying attention.

Smartphones are their life, according to 50 percent of consumers

According to a recent smartphone survey conducted by Prosper Mobile Insights among smartphone users on their devices, 52.9 percent said they utilize all of the functions of their smartphones—it’s their life. Almost one third (30.4 percent) said they use the basic functions of their smartphones plus some applications, and about one in six (16.7 percent) said they only use their smartphones for calling, texting and emailing.

While the fact that more than a half of the survey respondents referred to their smartphones as their life is somewhat disturbing on one level, while on another, it is a clear example of the shift from other media ( such as TV, personal computers, and print) and just how important mobile devices have become in the lives of consumers.

According to the survey, nearly 60 percent of smartphone users said they prefer using their smartphone to access the Internet more than they like using a computer (35 percent prefer to use a computer while 9 percent aren’t sure).

What will have retailers smiling is the fact that 82 percent of smartphone users said they use their smartphone to browse for products or services and 78 percent use their smartphone to locate stores or look for store hours. Reading reviews and researching specific products are also top smartphone activities, and half said they have made a purchase via their smartphone device.

When it comes to shopping, in addition to the numbers reported above, 58 percent said they use their smartphones to read reviews and to research specific products, 54 percent indicated they received text messages with special offers, 50 percent used their smartphones to actually make a purchase, 34 percent used smartphones to scan QR codes, and 21 percent used their phones to write customer reviews.

The survey conducted by Prosper Mobile Insights, utilized Survey Sampling International ( mobile panel, and included 102 smartphone users who completed the survey on their smartphone. The survey was conducted May 13-18, 2011.

--Michael Hodgson