Valentine's Day Spending Migrates to Mobile

Following a significant impact on holiday shopping, it appears mobile also played a role in purchases leading up to Valentine’s Day.

Overall online shopping grew 8% during the week before Valentine’s Day compared to last year and mobile accounted for more than a third (37%) of all online traffic, based on data from IBM’s Digital Analytics Benchmark released today.

As a percentage of online traffic, mobile increased 40% over last year, according to the survey based on transactions from about 800 retail sites.

Mobile also played a role in sales, accounting for almost one in five (17%) of all online sales, an increase of 43% over the same period last year.

Consumers tend to use smartphones to browse and tablets to make the actual purchase, consistent with other findings. For Valentine’s Day shoppers, smartphones drove almost a quarter (23%) of all online traffic compared to tablets at 13%.

However, when it came to the actual transaction, tablets accounted for 11% of all online sales, about double that of smartphones at 6%.

The key here is that the transfer of money for goods is being impacted by mobile, no matter where the actual money changes hands.

For example, the average tablet user order was $135 and the average smartphone order was $114. Of course, that only accounts for the transaction executed on mobile devices.

As consumers browse and search, many also make the actual purchase at a physical store, somewhat masking the influence of mobile on the sale.

As in other studies, iOS users were more active in shopping, with iOS users more than four times higher than those using Android devices, driving 14% of online sales compared to Android’s 3%.

But in either case, the mobile buyers were spending beyond small change, with iOS spending $132 per order and Android users spending $111.

Holiday spending seems to accentuate the shopping influence of mobile, though the reality is that the influence is growing every day.

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