Commentary

Amazon Holiday Shopping by Mobile Nears 60%

Amazon had a big mobile holiday shopping season.

Releasing a detailed tally of post-holiday shopping stats, Amazon said the majority, as in nearly 60% of all Amazon.com customers, shopped using a mobile device.

Mobile shopping also accelerated as the shopping season progressed, with Cyber Monday remaining as the company’s peak mobile shopping day.

Total holiday sales from the Amazon smartphone app doubled from last year in the U.S., according to the company, while declining to provide any specific sales numbers.

As one interesting stat, on Cyber Monday Amazon customers worldwide ordered more than 18 toys per second from a mobile device.

Part of the reason for increased mobile sales has to be the ease-of-use factor.

For example, I was recently shopping at Bed, Bath & Beyond and after selecting two items I scanned them both with my ShopSavvy and ScanLife apps for a comparative price check.

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Both apps showed that Amazon had a lower price on the products so I showed the cashier the Amazon price on my phone and asked her if they would match the price. They called a manager and based on a technicality declined to price match.

I instantly opened the Amazon app, found the items within seconds and ordered both before the manager had even returned the two items I wanted to purchase.

The total sale was more than $80, which included free shipping from Amazon. The Bed, Bath & Beyond products went back onto their shelves and I then left the store.

Amazon long ago figured out that one of the keys to mobile purchasing is to make it easy to do.

The process isn’t just about buying from a mobile phone; it’s about the product selection, credit card information on file, shipping address stored and easy follow-up by phone if there are any issues. 

The idea of mobile purchasing and free shipping from Amazon is likely to increase even more, as the company says it signed up more than 10 million new Amazon Prime members worldwide.

Shoppers obviously will continue to shop at physical retailers, though the people running those stores will have to deal with the realization that purchasing while in that store is just one mobile click away.

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