Study: Consumers More Likely to Shop On Mobile Devices Than PCs

More Than a Third of Visits to Top E-Commerce Sites Come Exclusively From Mobile

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While the "Year of Mobile" remains elusive for advertisers, it appears to have already arrived for e-commerce. Smartphone and tablet users are more likely to visit a retail website or app than desktop computer users, and more than a third of visits to the top 50 e-commerce sites come exclusively from mobile devices, according to a new study from analytics firm comScore.

In June, 91% of tablet users and 90% of smartphones users accessed a mobile e-commerce web properties. That's compared with the 78% percent of desktop web users that accessed e-commerce sites. The importance of e-commerce on mobile devices is further reinforced the study's finding that 35% of visitors to the most popular e-commerce sites only access those websites from mobile devices.

"Retailers who do not (at a minimum) optimize their mobile browsing experience or introduce mobile apps are effectively turning away a third of their potential customers," comScore said in a blog post about the study.

Some of other insights from the study include:

  • Consumers prefer to use commerce apps on smartphones, but mobile browsers when using tablets.
  • Mobile commerce has a pronounced seasonality, with rises in spending coming the third and fourth quarters of recent years.

  • Smartphones account for more m-commerce dollars overall but per device spending on tablets is 20% higher than on smartphones.

  • Book retail websites significantly over-indexed on mobile devices, and that was without including Amazon traffic. (Amazon is under the overal retail category because of its wide variety of available goods.) The leader in book m-commerce is Barnes & Noble, which makes the Nook e-reader.
  • Movie retail over-indexed on mobile, as well, with Netflix dominating the category. Netflix and its distant No. 2 Redbox account for 80% of movie retail traffic, according to comScore spokesman Andrew Lipsman.

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