Direct Mail with Mobile Features Is Changing Holiday Shopping

Today, 34 percent of smartphone users have made a purchase using a mobile phone compared to 19 percent in 2011 (source: DC Financial Insights, 2012). That number will rise as technology continues to evolve.

One technology gaining traction is image recognition (IR), which allows a consumer with a smartphone to scan a picture of a shirt in a catalog and be connected immediately to mobile shopping features. Also on the rise are smartphones enabled with near field communications (NFC), allowing the user to simply tap the device on a printed page to make a purchase—without an app.

“As more and more consumers become aware of mobile technologies, use will grow and shopping from a catalog and a smartphone will become as commonplace as driving to a store is today,” said Reblin.

“Although consumers are becoming familiar with this technology, one thing I still recommend to retailers is to devote some of their direct mail real estate to consumer tips on downloading apps and barcode readers,” he added. “Customers will appreciate the information, and the effort will help build brand loyalty.”

About the USPS
A self-supporting government enterprise, the U.S. Postal Service is the only delivery service that reaches every address in the nation—151 million residences, businesses and Post Office Boxes. The Postal Service receives no tax dollars for operating expenses, and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations. With 32,000 retail locations and the most frequently visited website in the federal government,, the Postal Service has annual revenue of more than $65 billion and delivers nearly 40 percent of the world’s mail. If it were a private sector company, the U.S. Postal Service would rank 35th in the 2011 Fortune 500.

Source: USPS.