Mobile commerce ramps, takes larger slice of shopping pie

Smartphones and tablets increasingly play a role in purchase decision, but most of the sales are closed on a desktop.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor

Fifty five percent of all Internet shopping time started with a smartphone or tablet in June, according to a study by comScore and The Partnering Group.

mobile app shoping

The findings highlight how commerce is increasingly going mobile. While final purchases may not happen via a smartphone and tablets, mobile devices are playing a bigger role. Mobile devices appear to be used for help making a decision or checking prices. In the second quarter, 69 percent of purchases were closed on a desktop device with 34 percent from tablets and 21 percent from smartphone.

According to comScore and The Partnering Group, the desktop is losing sway as the online shopping venue of choice. The desktop represented 45 percent of all retail Internet time. Smartphone usage in June surged to 44 percent of retail Internet minutes, up from 17 percent in June 2010.

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Add it up and mobile commerce was $4.7 billion in the second quarter, up 24 percent from a year ago. The upshot is that retailers need to invest in their mobile platforms.

Other key findings:

  • In the second quarter, 57 percent of smartphone users visited a retailer's site while in store.
  • 43 percent consulted another retailer's app or site while in a store.
  • Checking price differences was the main use.
  • Of smartphone users going to a retailer's site, 59 percent were looking for an online discount.
  • Apparel and accessories and event tickets were the top smartphone purchases.
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