Mobile Commerce – mCommerce

Posted on in Business

30 years ago at 00.01 on 1st January 1985 the first commercial mobile phone call was made.

30 years later voice is so last century and data 21st century with smartphones and tablets overtaking traditional desktop and laptop devices for surfing and making purchases via the internet – a far cry from the single use ‘brick’ phones of the 1980’s.

Success or otherwise of mobile purchasing (mCommerce)

Analysis of US web traffic data over the Christmas 2014 period (1 November 2014 to 31 December 2014) by IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark Hub revealed that:

  • Mobile traffic accounted for 44.6% of all online traffic.
  • Mobile sales accounted for 22.5% of all online sales.

Further analysis revealed that:

  • Smartphones Browse, Tablets Buy: Smartphones drove 31.2% of total online traffic, nearly two and a half times that of tablets, which accounted for 13.4% of all online traffic. However, tablets accounted for 13.4% of online sales, compared to smartphones at 9.1%.
  • Desktop: Desktop PC traffic represented 54.8% of all online traffic, and 77.3% of all online sales. It is interesting to note that consumers spent more money on their desktop purchases compared to their mobile devices - a difference of 19.4%.

What these numbers reveal is that e-commerce websites have a significantly higher conversion rate of visits to sales if they are accessed on a desktop than if accessed via smartphone/tablet despite the percentages of traffic from smartphones/tablets and desktops being broadly similar (44.6% vs. 54.8%).

What does this mean for eCommerce website owners?

The conclusions are:

  • If your website doesn't work well with small screens (smartphones) you are missing out on a significant number of sales opportunities.
  • If you want to increase sales then having your website designed to be responsive to work with all screen sizes is an important step forward.
  • Given the general trend of falling PC sales and the increase in smartphone/tablet usage early action should be considered by website owners to ensure a good visitor browsing experience.

Owners of non-eCommerce websites are not immune from the disadvantages a non-responsive design brings. So, even if you run a business marketing or brochure type website it is worth considering having it redesigned to be responsive.

Next steps ...

Check your website analytics to see how much traffic comes from mobile devices (smartphones/tablets) to confirm that a responsive website is the way to enhance your online presence.

If you want to know more about responsive website design then why not give us a call?

As the UK is becoming a nation of internet shoppers there is no reason to believe that these US figures are not representative here also.