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Britain: A nation of smartphone shoppers

A recent study by TNS reveals that us Brits buy more stuff with our phones than anyone else in Europe.

Britain rarely leads the way in anything these days, apart from, say, dedication to queuing, complaining about the weather and Daily Mail-inspired moral outrage, but now, according to WWP research firm TNS, Britons are number one when it comes to embracing the idea of online shopping on a smartphone, blazing a techie trail that leaves the world in our wake!

The report, commissioned by Google’s grandly titled director of performance solutions & innovations, Ian Carrington, stated that far from being the late-embracers of yore, today some 32% of Brits can be found regularly buying stuff on their blower, which may not sound like that many, but in comparison to just 8% of smartphone owners in France and Italy, 15% in Germany and 19% Sweden, we’re positively obsessed with shelling out for things on our phones.

Brits lead the smartphone-shopping way

“Smartphone penetration in the UK is relatively high compared to other countries and in e-commerce generally we tend to be more mature than other markets,” Google’s UK head of marketing insights, Jonny Protheroe, told Management Today. “It’s a case of the UK leading the way and others catching up. There’s not necessarily any intrinsic reasons.”

In total, 1000 adult smartphone owners in 18 different countries were grilled over their mobile money spending, with Britain emerging top – a result that proves three things: us Brits are now open to new tech more than ever; the High Street is dead no matter how much Mary Portas-ing it gets; and if you’re in retail and have yet to sort yourself with a mobile-friendly website, you may as well shut up shop now.

“In the UK, people are increasingly using their smartphones for researching products, locating stores and making purchases,” said Matt Brocklehurst, Product Marketing Manager at Google to The Independent. “That’s why it is now essential for businesses to ensure their sites are mobile-ready.”


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