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European study says mobile shopping driving impulse buys

The growth in smartphone usage is driving impulse purchases, according to a new Europe-wide study of mobile usage conducted by global financial group ING.

More than 139.5 million Europeans now regularly shop via mobile phone, with 42 percent of these saying that they regularly buy "on impulse," compared to just 25 percent of non-mobile adopters.

Clothing tops mobile shoppers' hit list, accounting for 23 percent of items purchased, closely followed by electronics (21 percent), games (12 percent), holidays (11 percent), music (11 percent) and groceries (11 percent).

British consumers have the greatest appetite for impulse buying, although other countries have been quicker to embrace mobile technology.

The Netherlands is Europe's most advanced nation when it comes to mobile banking, with almost half (47 percent) banking on their smartphone, compared to almost a third (31 percent) of Britons and fewer than one in five (17 percent) in France.