7 In 10 Smartphone Owners Prefer Search To Find Product And General Information

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Google recently surveyed 1,000 smartphone owners several times a day for a number of days to find out what they typically will do when they have “micro moments” – a sudden need to do something, go somewhere, buy something or want to know something. The survey data reveals they turn to search first to find what they are looking for.

The Google survey data shows that more than two-thirds (69%) of smartphone owners used their phone when they wanted a direct answer related to something they were planning to do, for instance, look-up a recipe or check out how-to videos. 72% of smartphone owners said they performed a search query first to get an answer, 34% visited a non-retailer website or used an app and 31% watched an online video on their smartphone. Full infographic at the end of this article.


Smartphone owners participating in the Google survey revealed that their most common needs for information fall into the general knowledge – for instance, what’s happening in the news – food/grocery and shopping categories. More than two-thirds (66%) said they relied on their smartphone when they were looking for an answer, according to Google. More than 8 in 10 smartphone owners indicated that they used the search function on their smartphone first to get an answer, more than half (55%) visited a non-retailer website or app and 40% looked at images or photos online.

The vast majority of smartphone owners relied on their smartphone when they wanted to go somewhere, for instance, find the opening hours of a store or restaurant or look up directions to the airport. 79% of smartphone owners used their phone to find information related to where they wanted to go. 69% performed a local search, 55% used an online map, 40% visited a store or other location and 36% visited a non-retailer website or app.

Smartphones also helped their users make decisions when they were ready to buy, according to Google. 65% of smartphone owners grabbed their phones when they wanted to find information related to a purchase, whether it was for price comparison checking or locating the nearest pizza delivery business. In fact, 71% of smartphone owners visited a retailer website or app first for information relevant to a purchase, while more than two-thirds (64%) performed a search. And when people searched on their smartphone, it tended to lead to action: 92% of those who searched on their smartphone made a related purchase.

Mobile search trends