Don’t be too surprised if you catch one of your relatives shopping on their smartphone during Thanksgiving dinner.
Twenty-eight percent of those who own a smartphone or tablet plan to shop from their mobile devices on Thursday, according to a Harris Interactive survey of more than 2,000 adults on behalf of Digitas. That’s nearly twice the percentage who said they would shop from a mobile device on Thanksgiving in a similar survey conducted last year.
Much of this increase in mobile shopping is being driven by students. Digitas found that nearly 40% of students plan to shop from their phones on Thanksgiving and more than 20% of students said they would actually forego going to a Thanksgiving meal if they knew in advance they couldn’t use their phones.
For these reasons, Digitas has dubbed the day “Mobile Thursday.” While it may frustrate some households who just want to have quality family time, Digitas argues the shift in mobile use on Thanksgiving poses a great opportunity for brands.
“With more consumers shopping on their devices, brands are being provided with more mobile moments to address and create impact — even during a time of turkey, football, and family,” Chia Chen, SVP of Mobile Practice Lead for Digitas, said in a statement.
That said, there are challenges for brands who want to boost holiday sales through mobile devices. Even though more people are planning to shop from their phones on Thanksgiving, the vast majority (76%) still think it’s easier to shop from a computer. If retailers really want to boost mobile commerce, they’ll have to improve the ease of the shopping experience on tablets and smartphones first.