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Holiday shoppers gladly use tablets to help with their gift buying, unless ....

by David Needle

November 19 2013

U.S. consumers are turning to smartphones and tablets more than ever to help with their holiday gift-buying. 

But a new survey shows some sites will fare better than others.

A Harris Interactive survey of of 1,323 smartphone and tablet users found that a majority of tablet users (56%) said they will use the device to search for or buy gifts.

Smartphones fared almost as well at 49%.

The poll was commissioned by Compuware, which specializes in website monitoring and performance tools.

Consumers 18-34, a group Compuware identifies as the Mobile Generation, are more likely to purchase products via their mobile device with 66% saying they will make holiday purchases using their mobile device. Also, 53% said they would be making more  purchases via mobile than a year ago.

Hurry up and wait won't work

But however popular mobile devices have become, there is one thing that will gum up the works for any ecommerce site - a slow response time. More than a third (37%) of respondents said they would abandon a shopping site if it doesn’t load in three seconds or less.

The 'mobile generation’ is a bit more impatient with 40% of those saying response time has to be 3 seconds or less.

The impact of a disappointed consumer can also have a ripple effect. The survey found that 29% of those who leave a site because of slow response time (and 40% of the mobile generation) will complain about the website or app on a social media network. 

(Stay on top of how tablets are transforming the media and advertising industry as well as ecommerce: Sign up for TabTimes free Tablets for Marketing, Media & Commerce newsletter.)

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