Research Shows Price and Brand Preference Key Influences for Mobile Travel Users As Nearly Half Make a Purchase
/NEW YORK and TORONTO, September 5, 2012/ xAd, a leading mobile-local advertising network, and Telmetrics, the top mobile call measurement provider, today revealed new behavioral insights regarding the mobile travel user—including four distinct mobile travel user profiles—as part of their Mobile Path-to-Purchase Study conducted by Nielsen. Overall, 88 percent of smartphone users accessed travel-related information and spent an average of 93 minutes per month on travel apps and websites.
Targeting Mobile Travel User Profiles Key to Mobile Travel Campaign Effectiveness
While mobile travel users are mostly younger (45 percent ages 18-34), Caucasian (72 percent), and male (52 percent) with a household income of $50-100K (34 percent), combining the survey portion of this study (1,500 U.S. smartphone and tablet users) with an analysis of actual user behavior from Nielsen’s Smartphone Analytics Panel (6,000 U.S. Apple and Android users) revealed four distinct types of mobile travel users – each with its own distinct travel needs, demographics and usage patterns (all represent ages 25-54).
“Travel brands today recognize the value of mobile but haven’t had visibility into the different mobile travel user profiles. The xAd/Telmetrics Mobile Path-to-Purchase Study results are key to helping these marketers better target their mobile campaigns based on how consumers are actually using mobile for their specific travel planning needs,” said Monica Ho, vice president of marketing, xAd Inc. “We’ve revealed four distinct user profiles to help advertisers provide greater ad relevancy and reach the appropriate consumer segments based on the types of travel needs they are trying to solve for.”
- Travel Researcher – These searchers are mostly Caucasian females with an annual household income over $100K. While they have a slightly longer path to purchase, they are heavy search engine users.
- Price Hunter – Deal seekers who are heavy social media users utilize social platforms alongside travel apps to uncover promotions and compare prices. This group is mostly female and non-Caucasian with an annual household income less than $75K.
- Frequent Traveler – Because these travelers conduct extensive travel research, schedule and availability are more important than price. They are travel brand loyalists and mostly a mix of Asian, Caucasian and African-American males with an annual household income greater than $50K.
- Local Traveler – Navigation apps and local directories reign for this group of mostly Caucasian and Hispanic males with an annual household income of $50-75K. Deals and location are primary drivers of their travel research.
Mobile Travel Search: Research and Convert
As mobile travel searchers spend more time in the research phase, they generally have a longer path to purchase. The most popular research activities are price comparison and looking at specific flight/airline/hotel information. More than 20 percent of mobile travel users are interested in local business information (phone number and business location) and prefer Local Directory Sites/Apps for obtaining that detail. Utility Apps are used most for pricing info and Brand Apps are more popular for booking reservations.
Although focused on research, mobile travel searchers are still converting at high rates. Nearly 50 percent (43 percent of smartphone users and 48 percent of tablet users) go on to make a purchase, with more than 30 percent converting within the day and more than 70 percent completing their purchase within the month. In fact, 29 percent complete the purchase via their mobile device. The top reason for booking travel is price, with 72 percent of users booking because the price was right, followed by 43 percent booking because of brand preference.
“While most mobile travel searchers aren’t making impulse decisions and take more time to evaluate their purchase selection, they are ultimately making a purchase,” said Bill Dinan, president of Telmetrics. “By understanding mobile travel users’ needs and behaviors and incorporating key drivers like local information, deals, and reviews, travel marketers can expect improved mobile ad monetization.”
Additional highlights from the study include:
- Smartphones over index tablets in activities related to finding and contacting businesses. On the flip side, tablets over index smartphones in more research-related activities like price comparisons, looking up reviews, etc.
- Only 25 percent of both smartphone and tablet users have narrowed down their activities to a specific brand/purchase, so the content that users view on their mobile device can impact their future purchase decisions.
- The majority of mobile travel users notice mobile ads with nearly 1 out of 3 clicking on the ad for more information – 75 percent noticed ads via smartphone and 63 percent noticed ads via tablet.
- Mobile travel users are most likely to click on locally relevant ads or ads that offer a coupon/promotion.
- 57 percent of smartphone and 52 percent of tablet users clicked on a mobile ad because it was targeted to their needs or recent search behavior.
About the Study
The xAd/Telmetrics Mobile Path to Purchase Study is the first to not only measure what consumers report they are doing via mobile devices, but also capture their actual preferences and behaviors, and includes specific market findings for the Travel, Restaurant and Auto categories. In early June 2012, Nielsen conducted an online survey of more than 1,500 smartphone and tablet users who reported that they had engaged in a restaurant-, travel- or automotive-related mobile activity in the past 30 days. This information was then combined with data from Nielsen’s Smartphone Analytics Panel of 3,000 iPhone and 3,000 Android users to help develop and identify the mobile consumer journey and highlight the core points of engagement on mobile from the first research engagement on mobile to post-purchase behavior.
The three categories were chosen as they rank among the top vertical markets projected to show major mobile growth over the next 3 to 5 years.
More details are available at mobilepathtopurchase.com.
Since 2009, xAd has grown to become one of the largest mobile advertising networks in the U.S. and the only one offering the ability to target ads using a combination of accurate location signal and search context. Across its network, xAd aggregates and manages billions of monthly ad impressions from which it derives the largest supply of location based advertising inventory in the market. For over a million national and local advertisers, xAd delivers targeted mobile location@scale.
xAd is based in New York City with several satellite offices across the U.S and Internationally. For more information, visit xAd.com.
About Telmetrics, Inc.
For more than 20 years, Telmetrics has been the call measurement industry leader. Telmetrics’ call tracking solutions, which are available in North America and across Europe, track the lead generation quality of local search advertising and pay per call programs for the leading brands in local search. This includes both publishers and agencies that serve millions of SMBs and national franchise locations across North America and Europe. With greater visibility into advertising performance across all media channels—digital, mobile, print and more—media publishers, agencies and advertisers can optimize the media mix for higher quality lead generation, resulting in increased revenues and a more complete picture of ROI across converging media. For more information, visit Telmetrics.com.
Young & Associates