U.S. Technology Consumers Reliant on Web, Video & Mobile Devices: IDG

U.S. Technology Consumers Reliant on Web, Video & Mobile Devices: IDG


Framingham, MA—Mobile devices continue to spur the digitizing of America at a rapid pace, according to the latest research from IDG Research Services. IDG (International Data Group) surveyed more than 3,100 visitors to IDG technology media sites in the U.S., such as PCWorld, Macworld, CIO, and Computerworld, to determine information consumption behaviors. 


The report, The Echo Effect: Understanding the Value of Tech Buyers, underscores the power of social media, the widespread use of mobile devices and the reliance on video to make purchase decisions.


Nearly all the survey respondents (95%) use one or more social media sites. According to IDG, “Exposure to a tech product in the social web positively affects the likelihood to purchase (44%), overall satisfaction with a company (44%), willingness to recommend a company (42%) and feelings of brand loyalty (40%). When asked how marketers should engage with prospects, more than 50% said they respond to questions from customers and provide information about products. Just under 50% want product reviews/rankings, product specs/pricing, the opportunity to provide feedback, and resolve customer service issues.


Also notable in the findings, smartphones and tablets are replacing PC-based activities: “At least once a month, a large majority of users go mobile for e-mail, use apps to seek tech news and information, engage in purchase-related activity and view video or other multimedia experiences.” Seventy-five percent of the tech-savvy respondents own or regularly use two or more mobile devices and one-third of their time is spent each week accessing tech info online via a mobile device.


The survey also found that mobile users are influenced by mobile ads. According to IDG, tech consumers said that after seeing a mobile ad on their smartphone (in the last six months), they researched a product (43%), looked for a product in a retail store (28%), clicked an ad (22%) and purchased a product (21%). These percentages were higher among tablet users.


“The reliance on mobile devices for purchase decisions tied to an ad is an important new factor,” said Matthew Yorke, president, IDG Global Solutions. “Mobile usage has been soaring for a while, but advertising has not. This research is a wakeup call for marketers. Mobile and social are converging to become one of the most powerful ways for marketers to influence prospects when they’re shopping,” he added.


When it comes to tech-related videos, 93% of respondents said they watched them while 72% reported they forwarded, shared or posted a video. And four in 10 consumers are watching videos on a smartphone or tablet, to view product reviews, get information to form buying decisions, and learn how to use a new product/service.


Notes IDG, “Video viewing also drives purchase behaviors: 64% of consumers have researched a product as a result of watching a tech-related video in recent months, and close to half of them looked for a product in a retail store (45%), visited a vendor website or contacted a vendor for information (45%), or purchased a product (44%).


According to the numbers, 87% of consumers choose technology websites for technology news and information, but approximately half seek out technology-related print media (52%) or tech blogs (49%). Farther down the list are video-sharing sites and social/business networking sites. When asked what they considered extremely/very valuable sources for finding relevant content, 86% of respondents said regular visits to tech sites, 70% replied traditional search engines, and 40% said recommendations or posts in social media, which represents a 14% increase for social channels in two years.


However, just 14% of consumers said a listing on the first page of a search result increases trust. Rather it is an association with a known, familiar source (well-known journalist or blogger, tech content site or tech marketer) that drives consumer trust in online information and content.


International Data Group is a leading technology media, events and research company. Founded in 1964 and headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, IDG products and services reach an audience of more than 280 million technology buyers in 97 countries.International Data Corporation (IDC), a subsidiary of IDG, has more than 1,000 analysts who provide global, regional and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in more than 110 countries. idg.com