One in ten retail searches are now via mobile

Mobile retail search volumes in Q3 grew at their fastest rate this year, up by 35 per cent.
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The BRC-Google Online Retail Monitor has shown that the increase for retail was driven by a total rise in mobile search volumes of 168 per cent compared the same period in 2010.

Overall, mobile accounted for ten per cent of retail searches and the growth of search volumes for multi-channel retailers reached 26 per cent in the third quarter, compared with 71 per cent for pure online retailers.

The online and mobile search trends are also increasing international retail trends, with the number of international consumers searching for UK retailers in Q3 growing by 34 per cent year-on-year.

Likewise, the number of UK consumers searching for overseas retailers grew by retailers grew by 78 per cent year-on-year.

Stephen Robertson, British Retail Consortium director general, commented: "Mounting pressures on household budgets may be generating more online retail searches as people work harder to compare prices and track down value. While searches grew 35 per cent, their fastest this year, the BRC's Retail Sales Monitor show growth in online spending has actually slowed to ten per cent, suggesting extra searches are a symptom of bargain hunting.

"Even so, online retailing is still expanding quickly compared with selling through stores and searching from mobile devices is showing the most dramatic increase. Retailers are engaging with and encouraging, this shift in shopping behaviour by providing more and easier ways to search and shop via smartphones and shop via smartphones and tablets."

Peter Fitzgerald, retail director, Google, added: "Retail searches on desktop rose by 35 per cent y/y in Q3, with mobile growing by 168 per cent y/y. September also saw an uplift, as Christmas gift related searches began to appear.

"This is unsurprising given that many consumers are Christmas shopping earlier this year, in order to spread the cost and avoid disruption due to bad weather. International searches for UK retailers also saw a massive uplift last quarter, as countries already originating large volumes of searches such as Russia, Pakistan and Mexico saw increases of between 90 per cent and 300 per cent y/y."

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