Almost half of retailers are planning to enhance their mobile offering by the end of the year, according to research from Stibo Systems.

Of those, 53% plan to optimise their desktop sites for mobile use, while 44% plan to facilitate mobile transactions.

Retailers also suggested that they are looking to invest in transactional mobile websites that are rich in multimedia and strengthened by detailed product information.

The survey found that comprehensive product information was identified as the most important aspect of a retailer’s website in terms of product pages (56%), ahead of images (13%), consumer reviews (12%), links to similar products (9%) and rich content (8%).

Retailers are also witnessing high demand from shoppers for detailed information about products, with over half (58%) stating that this was a top consumer requirement.

But while respondents generally recognised the growing importance of m-commerce it doesn’t mean they are necessarily in a position to do anything about it. 

The retailers reported lack of budget (58%) and legacy technology systems (37%) as the biggest barriers to investment in these mobile strategies.

The stats from Stibo Systems tally with the latest data from Econsultancy’s Quarterly Digital Intelligence Briefing which shows that 38% of businesses surveyed put mobile optimisation among the three most exciting digital-related opportunities for 2012.

A vast majority (87%) of those surveyed by Stibo Systems also stated that location and mapping will be a big trend in m-commerce in 2012.

However, only a quarter of retailers are actually planning on investing in location-based and geo-spatial technology this year, suggesting that it will be a long time before retailers are using this as standard in their mobile offering.

Stibo System’s research consisted of 100 interviews conducted with top UK retail organisations by Coleman Parkes.