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Faster internet will boost mobile commerce

A third of smartphone owners will buy more online when they have 4G-enabled devices, new research suggests.

The eCustomerServiceIndex (eCSI), from eDigitalResearch and IMRG, shows that as consumers embrace 4G networks retailers and brands must have a strong mobile strategy in place.

According the survey, 39% of smartphone owners have already used their mobile device to shop and this is expected to rise as more 4G networks and locations are introduced.

At present, 4G adoption remains relatively low at just 14% of smartphone devices, but those that are using it are much more engaged with mobile technology than those still using 3G.

Of current 4G users, 77% have accessed the internet from their device while out shopping, compared just over half of 3G smartphone owners.

More than half of 4G users have used a barcode scanner to see if they could get a product cheaper elsewhere, compared to just 20% 3G smartphone owners.

Derek Eccleston, commercial director at eDigitalResearch, said: “The introduction of 4G technology looks set to have a considerable impact on retail markets.

“With faster internet speeds and a better all-round browsing experience, more and more shoppers are likely to turn to their 4G enabled device to help them through their multichannel purchase journey; whether that’s to read customer reviews, check product descriptions or compare prices.

“Whilst the thought of this might scare some, brands need to embrace this next step of the mobile revolution and ensure that their entire end-to-end customer journey across all channels is set for more mobile.”

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