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The Rise of the ‘Mobile Mindset’ and Its Impact on Customer Behavior

Dr. Liraz Margalit
July 19, 2018

3 minute read

Marketers are constantly asking themselves the same question: What makes our customers tick? They ask this question because every brand wants to deliver more of what people want and less of what they don’t.

It’s a question that has become harder to answer in today’s digital world. Consumers now have more choice than ever before, and their expectations can appear to change on a daily basis. And this choice extends not only to what they purchase but how they purchase, and through which means they choose to engage and interact with brands.

Mobile mindset stat 1

One of the main reasons that marketers are finding it more complex to interpret customers’ expectations is because of the different behaviors that have developed as a result of the rise of smartphone use. Smartphones have created a different kind of consumer. This is reflected in the forecasts for global mobile ecommerce revenues, which are predicted to rise to $669 billion this year (up from $184 billion in 2014). In real terms, this means over a third of all online purchases are being conducted through a mobile device.

So as the influence of mobile continues to increase, what impact does it have on businesses? And how does it affect customer behavior?

Mobile mindset stat 2

The mobile mindset: 6 psychological elements

To answer these questions, Clicktale partnered with researchers from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Together we conducted a data-driven study into smartphone use and human behavior, “The Truth Behind Smartphone Behavior”.

What we identified was a set of 6 psychological elements referred to as the ‘mobile mindset’ — a safe zone which affects the way in which consumers interact with content and brands. Due to the relaxed nature of this safe zone, consumers are 35% more likely to engage with entertaining content (pop culture, sport, and ‘guilty pleasures’) than science- or culture-based content. Mobile users also demonstrate a clear preference for a fast customer journey. On average, they are 6.5% more likely to pay for expedited delivery in comparison to desktop users. Due to a relatively self-focused nature of the mobile mindset, smartphone users are also 84% less likely to donate to give-back programs.

Mobile mindset stat 3

The behavior of a ‘mobile mindset’ has significant implications for businesses. It’s time to start thinking about how different devices affect the consumer mindset, influencing emotions, content consumption and purchasing decisions.

It’s becoming more and more important for businesses to tailor customer experiences to not only the individual, but to the device the individual is using. By acknowledging that customer behavior is both highly variable and directly influenced by the device being used — whether that be a laptop or desktop, or a smartphone or tablet — brands can gain a deeper understanding of what their audience wants and can better tailor their digital experiences to match those needs.

Dr. Liraz Margalit
Dr. Liraz Margalit
Liraz Margalit, PhD, is a web psychologist and Head of Behavioral Research at Clicktale, where she analyzes online consumer behavior from a cognitive behavioral psychological perspective. Her analyses incorporate theory and academic research into a conceptual framework that creates insights into online consumer behavior. Liraz is the author of a Psychology Today blog called “Behind Online Behavior”. She is a lecturer at the Political Psychology and Decision Making program of the Lauder School of Government - IDC (Herzliya), where she did her post-doctoral research.
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