Mobile Commerce

Shoppers Continue to Go Mobile

Together smartphones and tablets were responsible for 58% of sessions during Cyber Week.

This holiday season started out strong for mobile. On Thanksgiving, mobile sessions outnumbered desktop sessions for the first time. But would mobile growth continue throughout the 5-day period of ‘Cyber Week’?

Over the course of Cyber Week, we focused on year-over-year trends for Thanksgiving and Black Friday and Cyber Monday. And we took a closer look at Android vs iOS, too.

At the conclusion of the week, we wanted to bring our Mobile Holiday Shopping Report back to where it started - desktop vs mobile. And what we found is that mobile retained its greater share of sessions.

Mobile Holiday Shopping Report

Together smartphones and tablets were responsible for 58% of sessions during Cyber Week. However when we looked at revenue, what we saw is

that almost 3/4 was contributed by desktop. Smartphone shoppers contributed 16%, and tablet shoppers contributed 11%.

While mobile conversion rates have traditionally lagged behind desktop conversion rates, a key factor for the almost 3:1 ratio between revenue from desktop shoppers and revenue from mobile shoppers is the way shoppers use their mobile devices.

Rather than just using their mobile devices to make purchases, smartphone and tablet owners use their devices to research products, locate stores, access product reviews, and find deals.

A recent study by CFI Group, found that 6 out of 10 consumers use their mobile devices to check online prices. Just over half (52%) use their devices to access product reviews. And 63% turn to their mobile devices to check prices at brick-and-mortar stores.

Google conducted a research study which shows 84% of smartphone shoppers use their smartphones while in a physical store. And 90% of smartphone shoppers use their devices for pre-shopping activities. Here is the breakdown for pre-shopping activities according to the study:

  • 58% to find store location/directions
  • 57% to find store hours
  • 44% to make price comparisons/find offers
  • 43% to browse
    Furthermore, about 1/3 used their smartphones to find where products were sold. And roughly 3 out of 10 used their phones to find product information, product availability and reviews. Based on Google’s research, only 19% used their smartphones to actually make a purchase.

According to Nielsen, 24% of U.S. mobile shoppers purchase an item on their device, whereas 70% use a store locator and 63% use their devices to find deals.

Interestingly, the ratio of percentage of mobile shoppers using their phones to find store locations and the percentage using their phones to make purchases is about 3:1 for both Google and Nielsen.

Given that most mobile shoppers use their phones for a wide variety of shopping and pre-shopping activities, it is not so surprising that while mobile sessions eclipsed desktop, desktop would for now continue to generate more revenue.

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