61% Permit Mobile Apps to Access Their “Current Location,” According to YP

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Consumer Behavior Reveals Opportunities for Local Businesses to Engage Today’s Connected Consumers

A new study: “Engaging Connected Consumers – Strategies for Local Businesses, Brands, and Retailers,” released today by YP, North America's largest local search, media and advertising company, explores consumers’ use of an expanding number of channels to connect with businesses – largely fueled by mobile. Among consumers surveyed, nine out of 10 “almost always” have their mobile devices with them and 61 percent permit mobile apps to access their “current location” at least some of the time. The report sheds light on how the mobile, social and digital revolutions are reshaping consumers’ lifestyles and, in the process, creating new opportunities and challenges for businesses looking to engage customers.

“The adoption of mobile devices is creating a great opportunity for merchants to connect with consumers in new and meaningful ways,” said Darren Clark, CTO at YP. “From a marketing perspective, mobile solutions are becoming richer in terms of features and overall user experience, allowing business to have value-add interactions with their customers at any time, on any device. Mobile adds an entirely new dimension to how small businesses can attract and retain customers.”

YP commissioned Dr. Phil Hendrix, immr Director and GigaOm Pro Analyst, to lead the research and author the study that surveyed more than 1,000 smartphone owners ages 21-64. Other insights in the report include:

Local Matters
Several findings from the study reveal the emotional attachment consumers have to the cities and neighborhoods where they live and the local businesses that serve them. These findings offer opportunities for local businesses to connect and build loyalty with consumers.

  • One in three respondents was willing to share their social media profile with a local restaurant. This compares to only one in four willing to share it with their bank or credit card company.
  • 56 percent reported being “excited or very interested to view/read news about local businesses in the area.” The top five categories connected consumers are most interested in include: Grocery Products, Restaurants/Bars, Clothing/Jewelry/Accessories, Books/Magazines/Newspapers (print or digital) and Entertainment.
  • When asked how respondents connect to national retailers and local businesses, the only channel in which local businesses are lagging national retailers is mobile apps (35 percent vs. 24 percent).

Location: It Shapes Consumer Connectedness
Wi-Fi and GPS-equipped mobile devices allow consumers to use location-aware apps and content to find nearby businesses and make “on-the-go” decisions.

  • 42 percent reported they’ve clicked on an ad for a nearby business.
  • 51 percent indicated they read a review of a nearby business in the last 30 days.

No Tolerance for “Mobile Fail”
While connected consumers enjoy discovering and trying out new mobile apps and websites, they expect the experience to be intuitive and problem-free. The study explored what respondents find “very annoying”:

  • 50 percent answered: Visiting a website that’s hard to view or navigate while on a smartphone.
  • 46 percent answered: Ads on a smartphone that aren’t relevant.
  • 18 percent answered: Waiting in line to checkout at store, restaurant or other business.

“To engage consumers, brands, retailers and local businesses must adopt and excel at strategies that personalize, enable, enhance and reward customers as they shop for and buy products and services,” said Dr. Hendrix, immr Director. “Today’s connected consumer is valuable but also has high expectations. As a result, brands, retailers and local business face an imperative – integrate mobile more fully into their strategies or find themselves slipping behind competitors.”

Download the full report at http://corporate.yp.com/connected-consumers or by visiting http://corporate.yp.com.

About YP
YP is North America's largest local search, media and advertising company. Its mission is to help small businesses and communities grow. Millions of searches occur daily using YP products to find, compare and select local merchants. The company's flagship consumer brands include the YP.com℠ site, a top 40 U.S. Web domain, the highly rated YP℠ app and the YP Real Yellow Pages℠ directory, the largest Yellow Pages directory in the world by revenue.

The company's wide range of print and digital advertising products are designed to address the evolving local search needs of consumers and help advertisers grow their business. The YP℠ Local Ad Network, along with other YP distribution channels, provides advertisers with an opportunity to reach nearly 95% of monthly Internet users across more than 300 affiliated online and mobile publishers.

Through customized campaigns designed by expert advisors, YP provides local businesses with one of the most cost effective sources for consumer leads. YP products and services are backed by thousands of media consultants and customer service professionals in local markets across the U.S. with relationships spanning over 600,000 businesses.

An affiliate of Cerberus Capital Management, L.P., one of the world's leading private investment firms, acquired a controlling interest in YP from AT&T in 2012.

Keep tabs on YP updates on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/YP or by following @YP on Twitter.

About immr
Dr. Phil Hendrix is an industry analyst and founder and director of immr, a leading research and consulting firm. Dr. Hendrix conducts research and advises clients on strategies and opportunities enabled by mobile devices, platforms and services. Recent analyst reports have examined hyperlocal advertising, Consumers' "Digital Signals" (from mobile, digital and other sources), how the combination of Social, Location and Mobile is transforming shopping and disrupting retailing and advertising, tablets, and innovation enabled by location-based mobile capabilities.

Using a range of research tools and methods, immr helps clients uncover and validate customer needs, position and differentiate new products and services, and accelerate market acceptance. Most of their work focuses on innovative products and services that are "new-to-market."

For more information, go to http://www.immr.org, follow us on Twitter at @phil_hendrix, or contact Dr. Hendrix at info(at)immr(dot)org.

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