Survey: Mobile devices to get big play over the holidays
Research results released Wednesday by multichannel commerce solution-provider MarketLive found that mobile will be used heavily for researching deals, making purchases and connecting with merchants across channels this holiday season.
According to the annual "Mindset of a Multi-Channel Shopper" survey, in 2012, customers will spend about the same amount on holiday gifts as last year — but a greater share of that spending will be online.
Of the more than 1,000 shoppers surveyed, 33% said they will do ‘All’ or ‘Most’ of their shopping on the Internet this holiday season. That’s a significant jump from last year’s 25%.
The survey revealed that 16% of consumers plan to do ‘All’ or ‘Most’ of their shopping via a smartphone or tablet this holiday season — that’s up from just 3% who planned to shop via mobile device last year. And 29% (up from 12% in 2011) said they’ll use their mobile phone to research gifts prior to a store visit. Also, 43% of the shoppers surveyed said they are ‘Very’ or ‘Somewhat’ likely to use their mobile devices for redeeming coupons when making an in-store purchase.
When asked about the most important factors in choosing merchants to shop online this season, ‘Good Value’ was number one with 87% of the shoppers saying that value was ‘Most’ or ‘Somewhat’ important. Price came in second, with 85%.
Across the board, shoppers placed more importance on the reasons they shop online than they did last year. Saving money, locating hard-to-find products, and saving time ranked as the most important reasons for shopping online for the majority of shoppers. However, shoppers are also placing more importance than ever on:
Online peer recommendations/reviews (45% of shoppers said these are ‘Very’ or ‘Somewhat Important’ this year as opposed to 34% last year) and finding more personalized gifts (50% of shoppers said this was a ‘Very’ or ‘Somewhat Important’ reason for buying online, versus only 41% last year).
Simpson Strong-Tie launches new component system
Simpson Strong-Tie has just introduced its Integrated Component Systems for roof and floor trusses and wall panels, along with a full line of code-listed truss connector plates.
The Integrated Component Systems line includes Simpson Strong-Tie Component Solutions software, a program providing manufacturers with the tools they need to design and manufacture trusses. Within the software, designers can model structures in an intuitive 3-D environment, create and optimize truss and panel designs, send truss design information to Simpson Strong-Tie for engineering seals and more. The company is working closely with users to expand functionality of the software on an ongoing basis.
Simpson Strong-Tie is also producing a new line of truss connector plates with some of the highest loads in the industry. Code listings for truss plate products include ICC-ES ESR-2762, Florida FL10495, and CCMC 13326-L and 13418-L.
Hunter Fan launches smartphone-controlled thermostat
Hunter Fan has introduced its Universal Internet Thermostat, which is controlled in-home or remotely with a smartphone app. The energy-saving thermostat, which can also be programmed by a smartphone, retails for $99. According to the Memphis, Tenn., company, the product installs in five minutes.
“The Universal Internet Thermostat works with a broad range of heating and cooling systems and can be controlled from anywhere, anytime with a smartphone,” said Martin Heckmann, group marketing manager at Hunter Fan. “The Universal Internet Thermostat is ideal for people and families who want to warm or cool their homes before they come home, and save money by turning off their heating and cooling equipment when they are traveling.”
Hunter Fan teamed with Arrayent’s Internet-Connect Service in designing the thermostat and smartphone solution. The first three months of Internet connectivity are free to purchasers as part a 100% risk-free trial. Consumers can opt to pay $9.99 a year after that, or a $49.99 one-time fee for product life-time Internet connectivity.
Subscribers can also set their devices to receive email alerts when a home’s temperature exceeds a pre-determined set point, indicating an issue that may lead to pipe freezing or mold building, or when it’s time to change the filter or battery level is low.
The product’s “5 Minute Installation System” relies on a built-in level on the thermostat, color-coded wire terminals and self-anchoring screws. Connecting to the Internet is as simple as connecting the gateway to a home’s wireless router, plugging it into a power source and when the light turns green, the thermostat is connected to the Internet, according to Hunter.
The Universal Internet Thermostat works with both a common “C wire” and/or replaceable AA batteries. Hunter estimates that an estimated 50% or more of U.S. households today do not have a common wire, which is essentially a power cord that runs from the heating and cooling system to the thermostat.