Meeting expectations

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Earlier this month, I wrote about a Texterity survey of app use, as well as the potential of HTML5 as an app alternative.

Yesterday, Julieta Lionetti pointed me to coverage of a survey of “connected consumers” that found only 4% prefer to use branded apps for online commerce. Of those surveyed, 87% preferred to access e-commerce websites from a PC or laptop.

A caveat: the survey is sponsored by Zmags, which offers retailers and other branded entities its “on-demand rich media merchandising platform”. Zmags is in the business of selling non-app e-commerce solutions.

That doesn’t invalidate the results; it’s just worth remembering. The full study, which contains more data than ReadWriteWeb was able to report, is available for download.

The 1,500 respondents skewed slightly female (52%) and richer (mean household income of $63,000 a year). The survey found that e-commerce via tablets is expected to increase significantly in the coming year.

Although the research does not specifically address publishing, it is a harbinger. Publishing is already blending with a variety of content-dependent businesses. As Amazon ably illustrated, how people shop eventually influences their thinking about things like access, pricing and customization.

So I may not buy the idea that 87% of us prefer websites over apps (or would know if we did), but it is worth knowing that tablet owners value convenience, inspiration, straightforward transactions and price. Whether through an app or a website, publishers will need to learn how to meet those expectations.

Brian O'Leary

About Brian O'Leary

Founder and principal of Magellan Media Consulting, Brian O’Leary helps enterprises with media and publishing components capitalize on the power of content. A veteran of more than 30 years in the publishing industry and a prolific content producer himself, Brian leverages the breadth and depth of his experience to deliver innovative content solutions.

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