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Consumers Prefer Mobile Apps for Gas and Convenience Searching By Motorists (Duh)


A new study reveals that consumers prefer to use gas and convenience mobile apps for searching versus websites.

NEW YORK July 17, 2013; NACSonline reported that with the summer travel season at its peak and gas prices continuing to fluctuate, mobile is the go-to search medium for gas and convenience searches according to the ongoing xAd/Telmetrics 2013 U.S. Mobile Path-to-Purchase Study.

With two out of three “gas and convenience” searchers using mobile exclusively, the study, conducted by Nielsen, includes new behavioral data revealing that 85% of search time in this category is spent on a smartphone with most conducting gas price comparisons/searches. The gas and convenience category offers one of the highest mobile conversion rates — nearly 90% — as most mobile users who search for these services are ultimately making a purchase.

“Mobile is the dominant media used in this on-the-go category and while searchers are making most decisions within an hour, they are paying attention to advertising and taking time to conduct price and location searches,” said Monica Ho, vice president of marketing for xAd, in a press release. “With the majority of searchers open to purchase options, advertisers have a strong opportunity to influence mobile gas and convenience buying decisions.”

With a very high conversion rate, the number-one reason mobile gas and convenience searchers say they use their device in this category is to “find a gas and convenience business to purchase from.” More than half of smartphone searchers plan to make a purchase within the hour and 88% of those smartphone and tablet purchases will be made the same day. While these are relatively quick decisions, gas and convenience searchers spend an average of 6 minutes per mobile search session — 50% longer than the average Retail mobile search session. Advertisers have an opportunity to impact these searchers as 75% of mobile gas and convenience searchers notice ads and only 10% have a specific brand or business location in mind.

Mobile consumers prefer gas and convenience apps versus websites, as app reach and engagement levels are the highest among the categories studied this year. Half (49%) of gas and convenience smartphone searchers use apps exclusively and, according to behavioral data, overall mobile searchers are spending 97% of their Gas & Convenience search time in apps. Comparison sites/apps, such as, are the most commonly used among 52% of mobile searchers as price and location are key search factors.

“With some of the heaviest app usage and highest conversion rates we’ve seen in our Mobile Path-to-Purchase research series, it is important that gas and convenience advertisers work with marketing providers that ensure their businesses can be found in apps in addition to mobile sites,” said Bill Dinan, president of Telmetrics. “Advertisers have a chance to drive more purchases by ensuring their mobile presence is optimized with location and pricing info.”