O2 reveals rise of young ‘mobilepreneurs' due to lockdown

A woman using a smartphone

O2 has revealed that many young people in Britain are becoming ‘mobilepreneurs’ - those who use their smartphone to sell products as a primary source of income. The firm said that this shift has been driven by the pandemic forcing people to stay at home.

The research, which was conducted by Censuswide, found that 33% of those aged 18 to 24 were very or somewhat likely to quit their job or education to spend their time selling items online using mobile apps. The study found that 67% in the age group attempted to sell at least one item online using an app while 31% reported selling 10 or more items. Additional income was the main driver for the respondents.

The main items being sold online were clothing (49%), footwear (24%), video games and consoles (24%), mobile phones (22%), beauty products (21%), homeware (19%), food and drink (14%), sports equipment and accessories (14%), playing cards including Pokémon Cards (10%), and fitness classes or advice (9%).

Commenting on the findings, O2 Business Director of SMB Marketing Kate Mulligan-Brown said:

“Younger people have been one of the most affected groups during this crisis, so it is wonderful to see that so many have shown an entrepreneurial streak by selling items online over the last twelve months.

In our increasingly digital world, the next generation of mobilepreneurs are showing us that all you need is a smartphone to start a business. It’s really as simple as that.”

According to the research, another draw for so-called mobilepreneurs was the flexibility of the work. Of the respondents, 24% said apps make the experience more flexible and 21% said apps enable them to carry out their business quickly and easily while they are on-the-go.

It'll be interesting to see whether the trend of 'mobilepreneuring' continues as more people become vaccinated against the coronavirus and start to return to a more normal life.

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