Understanding the Psychology of Mobile Commerce

20110817-090602.jpg In our industry it’s important to try and understand the psychology of how people shop – What do they shop for? Where? What time of day? On what type of device? Understanding these types of behaviors helps eBay, and our publishers, create the best experience possible for their users.

I came across an article last week on Adotas that talked about mobile and how it intersects with daily deals. Author Jay Weintraub is very clear about what he thinks works well and what doesn’t.

He says:

“It’s all about short bursts of attention. You’re competing with life much more when on a mobile device…or at least Angry Birds or its equivalent. It’s also a very browsing oriented medium not search oriented. More scrolling, swiping, and pinching, less typing.

The same things that make mobile different from the web in theory make it quite well suited for the deal space. Deals are impulse decisions. They aren’t the product of searches, and they are very local. The issue is the psychology. Deals work so well on email because it’s a captive audience. It’s why branding works so well on TV.”

Jay goes on to look at the types of deals (evergreen vs. perishable), and considers a user’s behavior when shopping on a mobile device. He believes that in order for mobile deals to be successful you need them to either have social integration or a game component - or both. What do you think?

How much do you think about mobile and how it ties into your business? What sort of consumer behaviors do you better need to understand to propel your business going forward?