Global mCommerce is predicted to grow 42% annually in volume and sales, 300% times faster than the entirety of the eCommerce sector. With a strengthening economy and impressive growth-rate in smartphone-based buying, it is becoming increasingly important for businesses to remain versatile and adaptable to keep abreast with mobile-first trends.
The growth in mCommerce has consistently been on the upward since the term was initially coined in 1997, defined as “the delivery of electronic commerce capabilities directly into the consumer’s hand, anywhere, via wireless technology.” Popularity has boomed more recently though, with the introduction of tailored products and services dedicated to make mobile commerce a more valuable aspect of modern day living, such as the integration of in-application mobile payments, mobile banking, vouchers and loyalty cards and location-based services.
This article will focus on the increasing importance of mCommerce for retailers, and a speculation on what the future of mobile ecommerce will hold for both retailers and consumers.
Increasing mCommerce Importance
The UK is the second largest mobile commerce market after Japan, giving UK retailers the ample opportunity to utilise mobile commerce and broaden sale horizons. In a mobile-first world, it is expected that retailers offer a mobile optimised site or downloadable application. Delivering a poor or non-existent mobile commerce experience jeopardises a vast potential of sales, as seen in December, when bad mCommerce experiences cost UK retailers £1.5 billion. During this busy time for retailers, mobile commerce generated £3 billion worth of sales, accounting for 27.3% of total online sales.
There are still several myths surrounding mobile commerce, that we have debunked here; including the common belief that a business has to create a mobile shopping app in order to launch a successful mCommerce strategy. Globally, 64% of users shop via app, with 52% opting to shop via mobile browsers, meaning that optimising your website for mobile use is equally as beneficial as curating a dedicated mobile application, which may not be viable for your particular type of business or industry.
Honing in on mobile eCommerce provides unparalleled benefits for both the retailer and consumer. Drastically improving the mobile shopping journey for customers encourages anytime, anywhere shopping capabilities – due to the practical nature of being equipped with a smart product at most times. Ensuring a streamlined and accessible shopping funnel over mobile can also influence the check-out cart size of consumers, thus becoming more profitable for the company overall.
With multi-screening becoming increasingly popular among modern day consumers, retailers have the opportunity to drive traffic to mobile commerce portals, even when using more traditional means of advertisement. For example, utilising the pragmatic and innovative benefits mporium IMPACT offers means that retailers integrate mobile commerce into an existing marketing strategy, pushing mobile commerce sites to number one on search engines to align with other advertising efforts on television.
This increasing importance of mobile commerce for consumers heightens expectations for the future of mobile shopping, with more advanced technology such as virtual reality predicted to become a staple part of the purchasing experience.
The Future for Mobile Commerce
In 2016, total retail mobile commerce will account for £25.2 billion, an increase of more than 25% previously seen in 2015. This consistent growth of mobile commerce is not expected to waver, with mCommerce predicted to consistently exhibit double-digit growth throughout the forecast period, rallying an expected £42.5 billion by close of play 2020.
With the continuous refinements and developments to the smartphone and tablet industry, and more users converting to these technologies over traditional computers and laptops, shopping traits are likely to closely match this trend too, with an even higher and more momentous portion of consumers turning to their smart devices to browse and complete purchases.
As smart-products adjust to the computing needs of the modern day consumer, it is unsurprising that retailers will be expected to accommodate, with responsive mobile websites that offer faster loading times and quicker check-out options. Google’s own research shows that good mobile UX can turn “users into consumers”.
Advancements in other technology such as artificial intelligence also broaden the potential for mobile commerce sites. The need to streamline the shopping cycle for online visitors for ease of access has become prominent in many mCommerce strategies for leading retailers such as ASOS and The North Face, who pave high expectations for other businesses looking to reap the benefits of mCommerce.
Mobile eCommerce is an indispensable asset to the sales strategy of retailers. Ensuring that a functioning mobile app or mobile site is available to consumers leverages the potential to increase online sales and appeal to a new market. 60% of online retailers have already adopted mobile sites, however that still leaves a large portion of businesses who have not yet explored the convenience and benefits of adjusting to the mobile-first mindset. If it’s a question of “why” your business needs an mCommerce strategy, you may find this past mporium article of interest, which explains the importance of adapting an intuitive mobile strategy.
The growth of mCommerce shows no signs of hitting a “stand still”, and as more shoppers turn to their mobile devices to place orders and purchase products, it is becoming increasingly important for business to boast a robust mCommerce strategy.
Never miss a mobile marketing opportunity again, with the help of mporium IMPACT.