Magazine article CRM Magazine

Retailers Are Rethinking Their Mobile Strategies: Smartphone Users Are Not as Purchase-Driven as You Might Think

Magazine article CRM Magazine

Retailers Are Rethinking Their Mobile Strategies: Smartphone Users Are Not as Purchase-Driven as You Might Think

Article excerpt

While 91 percent of retailers have mobile strategies in place, about 44 percent say they have not optimized their mobile presence to address tablet and smartphone shoppers.

According to the Shop.org and Forrester 2012 "Mobile Commerce Survey," U.S. smartphone commerce is expected to grow from an estimated $10 billion in 2012 to $31 billion by 2016. However, mobile sales still account for a small percentage of total Web revenue for retailers--about 7 percent is the forecast for 2016.

"The form factor has everything to do with it," explains Sucharita Mulpuru, vice president and principal analyst for online and multichannel retail at Forrester Research and author of the report. She adds that a consumer's ability to shop on a smartphone can be stymied by more keystrokes and slower page load times than she would encounter on a PC or tablet.

Not that some retailers haven't mastered the mobile buying experience on iPhones and Android phones.

"When you look at the sites that do really well on mobile, like Amazon or eBay, and some of the flash sale sites, like a Gilt Groupe, or a daily deal site, like Groupon, it's because they are one-click transactions," Mulpuru points out. "People are often transacting off of the app. Their payment and their log-in information is stored, which makes it easy and seamless."

A major differentiator between Amazon and more traditional stores is consistency in purchase. "Most retailers don't have that frequency of a relationship with their customers," Mulpuru says. "Their accounts haven't already been set up ... to allow them to just log in and purchase on a mobile phone."

While form factor is the key bottleneck for retailers looking to optimize their mobile experiences, it's just as much about security and simplicity.

According to Nielsen's Mobile Shopping Report, online purchasing was rated as the overall favorite method of shopping by 59 percent of 3,308 respondents and the easiest and most convenient by 68 percent. …

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