2015 has brought with it a fundamental shift in the importance for ecommerce sites to provide customers with a mobile friendly experience.

If the recent update of Google’s algorithm to give priority to mobile-optimised sites wasn’t enough, here are some extraordinary stats to really drive home the importance of mobile on retail.

  • Sales from smartphones increased by 107% in May, compared to the same time last year, according to IMRG.
  • Tablet sales grew by 32% during the same period, and those tablet shoppers spent more on average (£83) than smartphone users (£73).
  • According to an IMRG report from February 2015, visits to ecommerce sites via smartphone and tablet devices accounted for 45% of all ecommerce traffic in the UK.

Now you have the data, how about some inspiration?

Here’s a list which reveals some of the finest mobile commerce experiences currently available.

Fortnum & Mason

Fortnum & Mason increased mobile conversions by 57% with RWD, this is largely thanks to a suitably tasteful redesign.

The homepage looks particularly attractive here, and the navigation is clearly placed within easily accessible search and menu options.

The store number is directly accessible from the menu and it is click-to-call to make things easier.


This Amsterdam shoe store has a mobile website so minimalist that it's barely even there.

If you only have a handful of items to sell in just one line, this is perfect.

Virgin America

Tiny little micro UX touches and a perfectly optimised experience makes booking with Virgin America a pleasure to do on a smaller screen. 

You can choose an avatar for yourself and place it where you want to sit. You can also see other traveller’s avatars too.

Norman Records

The Leeds based record shop has been providing a masterclass in ecommerce for years now. It’s mobile site is no different, from its massive record sleeves and very clear, legible (and entertaining) text…

… too a checkout that remembers who you are, a guest checkout and the brightest calls to action in the North.


Hobbycraft gets the basics of ecommerce just right, which extends to its massively simple-to-use mobile site. 


Argos has been named one of the top multichannel UK retailers thanks to its customer-focused mobile app. I’ve covered it fully in the linked post, however here are a couple of highlights around its use of images.

Argos's categories are all the more appealing with the use of thumbnail images to encourage exploration.

The ability to view all available images for a product and then being treated to a nice large photo when tapped is particularly appealing.


Earlier in April, I asked whether the travel website is the most persuasive mobile website in the world?

See for yourself…

The homepage is simple, offering you with absolutely clarity the most important search functions that users require.

The calendar tool is easy to operate and uses a neat piece of micro UX to hide it away once the dates have been selected.

Social proof is also integral to the Booking.com experience. The community of users providing star ratings and reviews is huge, and this only helps bolster customer confidence and encourages them to return to the site.

Penny Skateboard

A genuine 3D customising tool that actually works on a mobile screen. And it’s really fun too.


Arguably the best mobile UX of any car hire firm is Europcar, as it's very quick and easy for a customer to get a quote and pay for car hire via mobile.

There’s the large text, a handful of well-spaced options that aren’t too overwhelming and there’s a clear indictor showing how long the journey through checkout will take.

Geolocation is also available to make your choice of pick-up as quick as two taps. If you want a different location, you just have to start typing and it will auto-suggest options for you.

Vehicle options are presented clearly, and sorted cheapest to most expensive. Buttons are also obvious and easy to tap.


Lush has a crisp, flat-designed site with a focus on editorial content that’s clear and nicely optimised for small screens.

Let’s not forget the all important predictive search box...

And this awesome product page.

For practical guidance, download our excellent Mobile Web Design and Development Practice Guide.

Christopher Ratcliff

Published 2 July, 2015 by Christopher Ratcliff

Christopher Ratcliff is the editor of Methods Unsound. He was the Deputy Editor of Econsultancy. You can follow him on Twitter or connect via Google+ and LinkedIn

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Comments (1)


Joanna OConnor, Marketing manager at Coles

Also to add to this list is a personal favourite www.seagullsofstkilda.com.au - excellent women's fashion responsive retail site with customer UX clearly at the heart of the design.

about 3 years ago

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