Back to School 2022 – LATAM & Wider EMEA Mobile Users’ Shopping Preferences

Aug 17, 2022
By: Jonathan Harrop

A new school year is just around the corner, and parents have started to get ready with lists of school supplies for their children. To help brands and marketers find the most effective ways to get consumers’ attention during back-to-school shopping, Digital Turbine conducted its annual Back to School Shopping Survey in its inventory.

We’ve already looked at how BTS shoppers in mainland Europe and the UK are planning on returning to school this year, but we also wanted to shed some light on the back-to-school shopping and online shopping preferences across the wider EMEA (not just the Europe part) and Latin America (LATAM) regions’ mobile users. Let’s dive into the survey’s highlights, with some insights per country! Be sure to check over the given charts!

Consumers in the LATAM region are planning to do back-to-school shopping in autumn:  Demographically, 54% of respondents were male, and ages mostly ranged from 35-44 with 34%. Regionally, 52% of respondents plan to do their back-to-school shopping in autumn (September). This is a little later than many regions, where the shopping typically takes place in the late summer.

School items are the most preferred products: With 62% of respondents in EMEA stated that they will attend school/office on-site this year, 57% said they plan to buy back-to-school supplies for their children. When we asked which products they would buy, 72% said what one might consider basic school items (pencil, notebook, eraser), 63% clothing/accessories, 45% electronics, 20% study/office furniture, and 16% sanitation products.

Students are likely to consume a variety of beverages and foods at school:

Students in LATAM said they prefer to buy mostly water (72%), fruit juice (56%), sodas (48%), coffee (21%), tea (19%), and milk (13%) at school.

When we asked consumers which snacks they prefer to buy, 62% stated sandwiches, 45% chips, 35% burgers, 28% biscuits, 23% chocolates, 20% ice cream, and 16% cakes.

Ordering online option is preferable while shopping for school supplies: After the pandemic, consumers have really embraced their online shopping habits. A massive 71% of consumers in EMEA prefer smartphones to purchase an item online, and nearly half (45%) will use order online and home delivery for some items.

The clear trend here is that 51% of consumers plan on ordering online, regardless of how they pick it up. In-store coming in at 49% shows a clear shift that back-to-school shoppers across the EMEA region are looking for the convenience of online more than the traditional in-store browsing experience. 

Providing a convenient journey leads consumers to prefer online shopping: When we asked consumers in EMEA about their primary reasons for online shopping, 63% of them stated to it is more convenient, 52% to compare prices more easily, 48% want to find lower prices, 45% think it provides a better selection, and 42% think it provides a better experience overall.

Most consumers in LATAM discover school supplies online via ads on mobile or tablets: Regarding the online discovery of the school supplies consumers are looking for, 49% prefer to use search engines, 43% rely on the ads they see on their mobile devices or tablets, and 38% use websites in the general sense. Also,  almost two-thirds (65%) would purchase something on their mobile device directly from an advertisement if the product is relevant to them!

To see more Back to School insights about the LATAM market, click here, and to find more about EMEA BTS insights, click here.

Back to Normal?

The survey results across EMEA and LATAM show us that, overall, online shopping, and shopping on mobile devices within that preference, have really become part of the back-to-school shopping ritual. Respondents will mostly discover school supplies via ads they see on their smartphones and would purchase something on their mobile device directly from an advertisement if the product is relevant to them. Parents prefer online shopping for their children this year instead of heading in-store since it is more convenient. It is obvious that smartphones will still have a place in consumers’ shopping habits permanently!

About the Survey

Digital Turbine conducted its annual Back to School Survey in its inventory. It was distributed across the EMEA and LATAM region to analyze consumers’ behavior on back-to-school shopping and online shopping preferences. Respondents’ ages ranged from 18 to 65.

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By Jonathan Harrop
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