Last year, for the first time, Google announced that more people browsed their platforms on mobile devices, rather than traditional desktop computers and laptops (even tablet devices are included in that number!). Offering a real 'on the go' solution and able to be slipped into a pocket or a purse – it's no real surprise to see that fact finally transpire.

The news has seen the need for websites to start thinking about making their designs more mobile-friendly, as undoubtedly the number of people using mobile browsers will continue to rise. By next year, industry experts predict that the twenty-billionth mobile phone will be sold – and that 9/10 people will be keeping their devices within easy reach all day, every day. For online traders mcommerce will become a vital aid in selling their products – so you can see how crucial it is to make sure that the design of their websites are the best that they're able to be.

Mobile eCommerce in the UK

Going hand-in-hand with Google's news that mobile browsing outstripped that of desktop computers, mobile and tablets accounted for over half of online sales last year – showing the impact that they have had on the internet and in particular, the eCommerce market. In time, this market is expected to grow.

Here are some of the mobile ecommerce trends that businesses have been undertaking recently;

  1. The continuing blurring of lines between physical and online stores. If you run both a physical and online store, then it's extremely likely that you'll be engaging with customers in both of these worlds. More people than ever before will have access to a digital device – many have more than one – so you can see how the lines between the physical and online worlds can be blurred.

    Many retailers are very aware of this overlap and as a response, they offer their customers a varying range of online and in-store offers, which include;
    • Online reservation. Customers can reserve (and pay) for a product online and collect it at their leisure from the physical store – which at least takes away the cost in delivering the product to them.
    • Same-day delivery. Not everyone can get down to the store or be able to transport the product themselves - and due to our nature of wanting things instantly, some stores offer a same-day delivery service that will prove to be a vital attraction to any customer browsing your products.
    • 'Beacon-enabled' features. These features include things like targeted offers, loyalty rewards and mobile payments. The vast majority of major retailers are planning to adopt this method by the end of the year, in order to take advantage of the burgeoning mcommerce market in 2017.
  2. Social eCommerce – will it deliver? Social media has a big impact on people's everyday lives – so it's no real surprise to see it also having a similar impact on eCommerce. Relating to mobile browsers, Facebook is accessed by over half a billion people via mobile only, whereas two-thirds of the traffic on Pinterest is generated by mobile browsers – overall, 60% of a consumer's time on social media is spent using a mobile device. This is something that has led to the introduction of 'buy buttons' which businesses are able to place directly onto their pages, which generate traffic from social media to their websites. It remains to be seen whether this experiment will be a success – it's a trend that's definitely worth keeping an eye on though.
  3. Mobile Web – still more important than developing an App. It's estimated that over 85% of time spent using a mobile is through an App – which is a pretty staggering figure. You'd be forgiven in thinking that this is something that as an eCommerce trader, you should look into. However, if you look at the number more closely, most of that time is spent on the same apps – which are mainly social media sites. Looking at mobile eCommerce in the United States, only two retailers – Amazon and Walmart – drove half of their traffic via their apps. This shows that retailers shouldn't put too much into producing their own apps to drive traffic and sales. Even though apps can play a key role in a mobile strategy to retain loyal customers, attention must be placed more on developing the mobile website in order to gain the majority of the custom.
  4. The importance of taking advantage of 'mobile moments'. Mobile moments – the times in between a user requesting a site and it loading up - are relied on by consumers to form their judgement of a particular website. If it takes too long or even if it doesn't load up – then the customer is going to go elsewhere.

    Here are some key facts on the effects of mobile moments;
    • 64% of mobile phone users will expect a website to load in 4 seconds or less.
    • 40% will turn to a competitor's site for a better mobile experience.
    • 1-in-4 online shoppers will abandon their shopping carts and go elsewhere if they find the design of the website too complex and difficult to navigate.
  5. The growth of mobile usage will need to be met with mobile optimisation. We've already learned how imperative it is that a business's website must be optimised so the speed and navigation is the best that it can be. This fact needs to be looked at more closely as it's been estimated that retailers are losing billions per year due to the abandonment of shopping carts. Research has shown that every two out of three users who add items to their carts will leave without making a purchase. These numbers are even worse on mobiles – conversion rates are 70% lower than that on desktops.

    With the usage of mobile internet continuing to grow, brands need to focus on their checkout experiences more in the coming years, finding ways in which they can sell their products on mobile phones and making the overall design of their website better.

Advansys – Specialists In Website Design and Digital Marketing.

We are proud to be able to offer quality and bespoke mcommerce designs for any type of online business. Vastly knowledgeable and experienced in mobile optimisation, our experts are here to help you to learn how to get the maximum potential out of your website. For more information on how we can help to improve your online conversions, please don't hesitate to contact us on 0838 050 2700 or send us an e-mail at sales@advansys.com

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