Last year’s holiday season was a hands-down winner for mobile shopping. Traffic and sales both hit all-time highs during Holiday 2017. In my own company’s examination of retailers’ eCommerce strategies (to be released August 25th), we found that 90% of surveyed retailers reported that more traffic now comes from mobile than from desktop.
For consumers, it’s easy to think that because it’s “digital” they are getting the same experience on mobile that they’re getting from the desktop site.
Are they? The simple answer is no. But it’s actually not that simple.
A Short History of Mobile Commerce Sites
Mobile commerce in retail started out much like eCommerce did in general. In most retailers, a few people saw the importance of the channel as it began to emerge and insisted their company do something about it. As a result, the first mobile site efforts were separate from eCommerce (both because it was a bit experimental and to make it easy to kill). They offered much less capability than the desktop site, in part because some of the technologies that made desktop sites work just weren’t supported by early mobile browsers.
Even today, mobile is often treated as the neglected step-child. At RSR, we still find retailers who offer digital gift cards on their desktop site that are obviously a broken process on mobile. Even if retailers with that issue can’t actually support the mobile purchase of digital gift cards (which they should be able to do), it’s clear they’re not even paying attention to what the experience looks like on mobile – better to just turn it off completely than to continue to offer something that errors out every time a shopper tries to use it. I wonder every time I evaluate retailers with this issue if anyone is paying attention to mobile at all – does no one notice they are getting 0% conversion rate on mobile digital gift card purchases?
Today’s Mobile Commerce