E-commerce sales over smartphones more than doubled worldwide this April. Is your website ready for m-commerce?

May 27, 2014

Not long ago, Branding Brand made its worldwide Mobile Commerce Index report for April 2014 public, and the results were bullish on m-commerce. The report consolidated global data on consumer activity that came to ecommerce retailers through smartphones and similar small mobile devices, and gave us some useful comparisons of the performance of smartphone-optimised ecommerce sites between April 2013 and April 2014.

Just how are ecommerce sales and mobile devices changing the way consumers search for products?

They determined that smartphone visits to the 18 index-sites had nearly doubled since last year’s sample, from just over 9 million in April 2013 to 17.8 million in April 2014. Conversion rates remained roughly steady, as the number of orders also fell just shy of doubling, from just over 54,000 to just over 106,000. Importantly, global revenue from tracked smartphone-optimised sites more than doubled from just over £3.25 million to just over £7 million. Even accounting for inflation (the study used USD) this represents nearly twice as many orders from mobile devices, and an increase in average order value.

So, what about global market share? How do these figures compare to overall e-commerce?

April 2014 saw fully 29% of site visitors from mobile devices. Of them, just under 2/3 were from iOS (Apple/iPhone) devices, and just over 1/3 were from Android devices. This more or less matches the market share of the two platforms. I am a little surprised that there is virtually no traffic from Windows phones, but not terribly. I mean, do you know anyone who uses one?

The important thing is that these figures are up substantially from April 2013, when mobile traffic was 45% lower and desktop/laptop traffic was 22% higher (remember, it started out twice as high).

Triple digit gains cannot be ignored. They represent a basic shift in the market, and ecommerce retailers had better pay attention. Omni-channel commerce is no longer ‘on the horizon’. It is here, and if your site is not responsive to the platform your visitors browse from, you are leaving at least 1/3 of potential customers out in the cold.

A good e-commerce fulfilment partner will be able to integrate omni-channel sales technology with your existing e-commerce site, and open up a whole new (and rapidly growing) customer base to you. M-commerce is an established fact, and it is not going anywhere. Make sure your website can cope, and make sure your fulfilment partner can too.

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