Retail Opportunity in 2016: M-Commerce Projected to Grow by 68%

In What's New, Industry News by Accessories Staff

mobileshopperLos Angeles—What’s top of mind for retailers in 2016? It better be mobile commerce, according to a new study from Bizrate Insights.

Bizrate Insight’s latest projections show website purchase on mobile devices will reach a surprisingly high magnitude—perhaps higher than some retailers expect.

Further breakdowns of M-commerce purchases tablet vs. smartphones reveal interesting findings that can help retailers clarify their mobile priorities in 2016.

Set to Skyrocket

When broken out between smartphone and tablet, 2016 projections show a clear majority of website purchases going to phones, with a high of 33%—a third of all online orders—in November.

Meanwhile, in the absence of meaningful innovation, tablet purchases will stagnate (if not decline slightly).

When looking month-over-month at November order volume, Bizrate Insights projects that mobile website purchases will increase by as much as 68% from 2015 to 2016. The peak volume during the 2016 holiday season may reach as high as 42%—nearly half—of all online orders.

BizRate

Percent of online orders placed on a phone or tablet 2013-15 and projections for 2016

Keep in mind this does not include in-app purchases, meaning total mobile purchases will almost certainly roll in higher in 2016.

Don’t Ignore iPad Customers

The Bizrate Insights Mobile Tracker uses device data collected via the Bizrate Insights survey platform from invitations offered to online buyers immediately after purchasing from the Bizrate Insights Network of over 5,000 e-commerce retailers in the US and Canada. Data for this study was collected from over 540 million online purchases during July 1, 2013 through December 13th, 2015.

Although smartphones have overtaken tablets in mobile website purchases since the early summer of 2015, iPads still have a significant role to play. When separating mobile website purchases in 2015 by OS and device, it turns out that orders placed on iPads still surpassed individual iPhone and Android phone volume through the year.

The Bizrate study comes on the heels of Adobe’s report that found smartphones generated a record 22% percent share of all online sales on Black Friday, 70% more than in 2014. Tablets drove 15% of online sales on Black Friday, a 2% decrease year-over-year. For Cyber Monday, IBM found smartphones drove 15.2% of online sales, up nearly 70% over 2014 and exceeding tablets at 12.4%.

Bigger screens, improved functionality and emerging mobile pay options are among the factors expected to support smartphone purchases.

“Retailers—in fact all consumer facing brands—need to ensure that their online experience and all core actions work properly and intuitively on iPhones, Android phones, and iPads. Prioritize development projects and QA tasks based on your customer experience and satisfaction by device, OS and browser. It is unfortunately common for a new feature or user experience to operate as expected, but still manage to displease or confuse the customer,” says Hayley Silver, vice president at Bizrate.

“Brands should measure customer satisfaction before and after all major releases, especially those that are integral to purchase. Considering the percentage of mobile website purchases projected for 2016, focusing exclusively on your in-app experience may alienate new visitors, thwart conversion or damage your brand.”

About this Study

The Bizrate Insights Mobile Tracker uses device data collected via the Bizrate Insights survey platform from invitations offered to online buyers immediately after purchasing from the Bizrate Insights Network of over 5,000 e-commerce retailers in the US and Canada. Data for this study was collected from over 540 million online purchases during July 1, 2013 through December 13, 2015.

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