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33% of Shoppers Use Apps or Websites to Help Them Grocery Shop

With grocery prices on the rise and incomes on the decline, consumers are looking for new ways to make ends meet. For 33% of them, it’s all about using digital resources to plan their weekly shopping trip.

Acosta Sales and Marketing has released a new report called “The Why Behind the Buy.” The report is all about trends in grocery shopping and what retailers and marketers can do to stay ahead of the game.

In general, Acosta found that consumers are more conservative than they’ve been in the past and that this behavior is the “new normal.” It’s happening because shoppers are spending 3% more on an average grocery run but they’re getting a lot less. As the main grocery shopper in my house, I can say for sure that that fact is true.

Lost Inside? There’s A Map for That

Google has introduced an Android only (makes sense) map function that will give you guidance when you are indoors (where available, of course). Malls, airports and more as listed in the Google LatLong blog.

Here’s Google’s video to give you the finer points

Cyber Monday Beats Black Friday

Cyber Monday is over (sort of) and the results are in. It’s a HIT!

According to IBM Benchmark, Cyber Monday sales were up 33% over last year. The average order value also rose from $193.24 to $198.26.

Unlike Black Friday, there were two peaks during the day, one at 11:05 PST and again late in the evening. Take a look at this comparison chart. Except for the early morning hours, Cyber Monday beat the pants off online Black Friday buying to the tune of  29.3%.

Just When You Thought it Was Safe. . .

Now, here’s what’s interesting. Part of the reason these big sale days work is because they’re special. 24 hours of the lowest prices and best deals. Yet, this morning, I woke up to emails from two retailers saying they were extending their sales for another 24 hours. So now it’s Cyber Tuesday?

Mobile Paid Search Offers Bigger Bang for the Buck

Now that more people are using their mobile devices to search and shop, more advertisers are paying for mobile ads — it’s the circle of life and it’s working out well for everyone involved.

New numbers from Performics show that smartphone CPCs are still a real bargain, coming in at around 40% less than desktop CPCs. The one mobile exception is the tablet, which, last week, rose 20% over desktop CPCs.

When compared to last year, mobile impressions and click shares are both way up. Says Performics:

“We now predict that mobile paid search will make up 25.4% of all clicks (desktop + mobile) in December 2011, up 8 percentage points from our projection a month ago.”

For those visual learners in the bunch, here’s a graph that tells it like it is.

Mobile and Retail Continue to Evolve Together

There are certain things that you just know with regard to the internet space and one of those is the link between mobile and retail. They work well together. It makes sense. Going on gut, however, usually isn’t enough to convince others as to why you feel the need to increase spending on mobile efforts if you are a retailer.

So to make the point a little clearer that mobile and retail are becoming more joined at the hip than ever, we look to an eMarketer article that first highlights data from comScore which tells us that mobile users are truly relying on their devices to help them make purchase decisions.

Black Friday Online Sales Up 24% Over Last Year

Another Black Friday is over and in the books and it looks like a good time was had by most.

IBM Coremetrics estimates a 24.3% increase in online sales over last year. As you can see from this chart, midnight was the magic hour with a nice spike over the last two years. This is likely due to the fact that many major chains made holiday prices effective at midnight online as well as in stores.

Sales peak in morning then slowly taper off, but still 2011 stayed well above the numbers from previous years with slight exceptions. (Can anyone account for that crazy early morning spike in 2009?)

Breaking it down by category, Department Store online sales were up 59%. Home Goods was up 48.8% and Apparel was up 47.2%. I like those numbers.

A Banner Day for Black Friday Retailers

This year, Black Friday began earlier than usual with many chains opening on Thanksgiving and even more starting as early as midnight instead of the usual 4 or 6 am on Friday.

Toys R Us cashiers can take comfort in knowing they’re not the only ones slogging through the holiday madness. The folks at IBM Coremetrics are at their desks, turning out data as fast as they can.

So far, they say this Thanksgiving 2011sales were up 39% over last year and that it was a “banner shopping day” for online retailers.

Mobile traffic to online retail sites was also good with 15.2% of consumers using a device to log-on. That’s up 6.45% from 2010.

11.09% represents the number of folks using their mobile device to actually buy items and that’s also up from 4.25% in 2010.