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Posted by Sucharita Mulpuru on July 25, 2011
While all eyes in the online retail space seem to be on social networks and smartphones these days, we’re seeing an emerging trend with tablets that could be the most interesting of all. Only 9% of web shoppers now have tablet devices, but here’s the big deal — most of those people already own smartphones (as well as PCs, of course), and they are saying that they actually prefer to use their tablets for shopping. Not only that, but the ownership of the tablet device itself actually increases the amount of time that people spend online. And we’re anticipating a hockey stick in tablet adoption in the next five years on top of all that. You can read more about these findings in the report my colleague Sarah Rotman Epps and I just wrote titled, “Why Tablet Commerce May Trump Mobile Commerce,” which is based on findings from our joint research on online shoppers with Bizrate Insights. Some of the most compelling aspects that are helping to drive the shopping experience on the device:
Now the big question for retailers in particular is: While more people may be increasingly accessing web content on tablets, does that mean that content needs to be specially adjusted for the device since in most cases you can do nothing and it renders well enough? For anyone with a tight budget or limited resources, the answer is probably not. But what tablets present is a unique and growing opportunity for deeper customer engagement that can make the Internet shopping experience much better for discovery, inspiration, and interactivity. And much better than social networks and smartphones ever could.