When discussing the opportunity in smartphones and tablets, the e-commerce industry often forgets that retailers need both apps and mobile websites to thrive. In a recent BI Intelligence report, we dug into mobile habits among audiences of the top e-commerce properties, and benchmarked retailers against one another in terms of mobile site performance.
- Overall, the mobile web is a more popular portal, especially for traditional retailers. Some traditional retailers skew dramatically toward the mobile site. Home Depot and Best Buy see nearly 100% of time spent on mobile via the browser, despite also marketing their apps.
- Etsy is an online-only retailer that sees more browser engagement, at 63% of time spend.
- Mobile site performance is all over the place: Sears, the retailer with the fastest-loading mobile site, saw about six out of every 10 minutes of mobile time spend happening on the mobile website. Sears also notably sees a greater share of mobile-only visitors than either Amazon, eBay, Walmart, or Etsy. (See chart, above.)
Here are more of the key findings from the report:
- 58% of mobile retail dollars going to the top 500 mobile retailers will come from the mobile web this year, with in-app purchases accounting for the rest, according to Internet Retailer.
- The mobile web is also how many consumers prefer to shop on a mobile device. 51% of shoppers were more interested in shopping on the mobile web over apps on their smartphones in 2013, according to Adobe data.
- The mobile browser, which is often a gateway to retailer sites, is an important first stop for shoppers using their smartphones in a store. 82% of smartphone shoppers say they use a mobile browser’s search function to research products when they’re in a store, according to a 2013 study conducted by Google. Another 62% say they go directly to a retailer’s mobile website, while only 21% use a retailer’s mobile app in a store.
- Yet, despite the mobile web’s importance to shoppers, retailers under-utilise their resources for selling through this popular shopping channel. Only 60% of the top 100 global retailers have a dedicated mobile website. In fact, 32% are still showing mobile users a desktop-optimised version of their website on mobile devices. And only nine of the top 100 retailers have a responsively designed site, the format recommended by Google.
In full, the report:
- Looks at how shoppers use the mobile web during different stages leading up to a purchase
- Identifies what leads consumers to use a mobile shopping app versus a mobile site, and vice versa
- Examines how retailers should leverage both the mobile web and apps
- Benchmarks the performance of top mobile retailers and their competitors
- Notes the wide variation in how retailers’ audiences are breaking down between the brower and the app
To access the Mobile Commerce Report and BI Intelligence’s ongoing coverage on the future of retail, mobile, and e-commerce — including charts, data, and analysis — sign up for a risk-free trial.
Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through his personal investment company Bezos Expeditions.
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