How a market research company used mobile ethnography to understand the lawn-cutting routines and rituals of consumers.  

The size and landscape of lawns varies a lot from house to house. For this reason, there is many different lawn mowers of various makes, models, sizes and functionality. One such type of lawnmower that has become more common in recent years in the robotic lawnmower. The robotic lawnmowers save on time and labour and can be controlled using smartphone apps, removing the need to even be present at your home to cut your lawn.


The Challenge

Because robotic lawn mowers are such a recent phenomenon, little is known about the key motivations of consumers when deciding to make the switch from conventional push lawn mowers. Not alone is it difficult to understand the motivations when it comes to their choice of mower, but it is even still difficult to really understand the consumers motivations and routines when it comes to their lawns.

Ground-conditions can vary a great deal from country to country, as can the size of lawns and type of grass. To really understand how the rituals and routines of lawn mower owners and how their experiences differed, they would need to gain an insight into the habits of consumers in number of international markets.

The Goals


Our clients objectives were to:

  • Understand how the lawn-care routines and rituals of homeowners vary across different countries and continents

  • Gain an insight into the satisfaction levels of current owners of robotic lawn mowers

  • Understand the motivations of non-owners of robotic lawn mowers making the switch from conventional push lawn mowers


The Solution


When our client approached us, we immediately set about assisting them in setting up a project that would place them at the centre of homeowners lawn-care routines over the course of 2 weeks. Over the 2 weeks client got a window into the everyday gardening and lawn care moments. To truly understand how these routines varied amongst the homeowners, they conducted the project in four different countries across the USA, Europe and Scandinavia. This meant that Indeemo provided an extremely cost-effective way of getting a real-life insight into the lawn-care rituals across the globe. Additionally, because of Indeemo’s unique ability to task in any language, they were able to recruit more easily and get deeper, authentic feedback from respondents.

Our client identified 8 separate target groups for the purpose of the project, splitting owners and non-owners of robotic lawn mowers for their research objectives. In doing so, they were then able to analyse each group independently using the indeemo dashboard. As the 48 respondents from across the world then engaged with the project, they were able to identify both unique and common issues, behaviours and expectations of consumers across the globe when it came to their lawn-care routines.


Ultimately, the ability to engage with respondents in the moment as they documented their lawn-care routines over the two weeks was very powerful. Both owners of robotic and potential buyers of robotic lawn mowers revealed some fascinating insights into their expectations and motivations when it came to the new garden tools. As respondents went about cutting their lawns, they were uploading media-rich videos and photographs in-the-moment and in their own unique gardens. Our client was then able to further probe respondents to truly understand what exactly respondents were highlighting in their uploads.   

If you’d like to learn more about how mobile ethnography can help a gardening or home maintenance tool brand understand the motivations and routines of homeowners, please get in touch using the form below.

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Autoethnography is a cost effective, media rich, scalable solution that enables you to witness the split second point-of-purchase decisions that Shoppers make.

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