Mobile commerce sales have doubled in the space of a year and now account for almost a quarter of total online sales, according to a new report.
It again highlights the growing importance of m-commerce at a time when many retailers are still struggling to develop effective, user-friendly mobile sites and apps.
The new data from IMRG and Capgemini shows that sales completed through mobile devices accounted for 23.2% of total ecommerce sales in Q2 2013, up from 11.6% in the same period last year.
A separate survey included in the Econsultancy Mobile Commerce Compendium found that half of smartphone owners (51%) hadn’t made a purchase using their smartphone in the previous six months, which shows that there is still huge potential for m-commerce sales to continue rising as a proportion of total online sales.
In the past six months how many times, if at all, have you used your smartphone to make a purchase from a mobile website or using a mobile app?
However the IMRG stats also serve to underline the fact that the mobile web is primarily used for research and browsing rather than making purchases, as m-commerce sales lag far behind site traffic from mobile devices.
As mentioned, 23.2% of online sales came from mobile devices in Q2 2013, however smartphones and tablets accounted for 34% of visits to ecommerce sites (up from 21.1% in Q2 2012).
The new report also states that there was a significant rise in ‘click and collect’ sales in Q2, reaching a record high of 16% of online sales for multichannel retailers.
This represents annual growth of 33%, up from 12% in the same period last year.
Click and collect has proven to be very effective at driving online sales and was a key factor behind New Look’s recent 79% jump in online sales.
Similarly, Argos’ ‘Check and Reserve’ service accounted for 31% of online sales in Q4 2012, while Halfords introduced a click and collect service three years ago and now 86% of all its online sales are for in-store collection.
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Finally, the switch in device usage also appears to have had a knock-on effect on bounce rates.
At the beginning of 2010 over 97% of retail site access was through a desktop. Over the subsequent three years, as mobile device access began to grow rapidly, the bounce rate rose from 21.7% in 2010 to 23.7% in 2011, before reaching 27% in 2012. Year to date in 2013, the bounce rate is 26%.
This could be caused by consumers researching product options and prices on a mobile device before they eventually make a purchase on desktop.
The IMRG Capgemini figures come from The Quarterly Benchmarking Index which tracks over 40 key performance indicators across seven categories.