According to the IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark, reported by DMNNews, shoppers who have grown more comfortable with shopping and buying on mobile devices powered an increase of more than 8% in online sales this Christmas Day. Mobile purchases alone rose 20% and accounted for 35% of total sales.
27% of online sales occurred on iOS, nearly four times that attributed to Android devices at under 8%. Jay Henderson, director of IBM Smarter Commerce, said “… demographics of Apple users play a big part… but Apple got the user experiences right… It's easier for people to navigate and buy on iOS… “
While desktop PCs fell below mobile devices with only 43% of traffic on e-commerce sites on Christmas, they accounted for nearly two thirds of online sales for the day. Average order values were $107.72 on desktop compared to $88.70 on devices.
“People are browsing and buying more on mobile… ” Henderson says “… but they're browsing and buying even more on desktops… it's easier to input personal information there… and there are product categories… often higher-priced items… that are easier to inspect on a larger screen…”
Though Facebook drove the most volume in the social sphere, Pinterest referrals led to average orders of $99.86 to Facebook's $89.80.
And, Internet Retailer continued, noting that the average order value was up 6.2% on the holiday versus Christmas Day 2013. Amazon reports attracting 10 million new Prime customers during the holiday season and UPS geared up to handle 4 million returns in the first week of January.
While noting that the 10 million new members likely include consumers signing up for free trial memberships in Amazon Prime, Colin Sebastian, analyst at Robert W. Baird & Co, says “… we believe Prime continues to be a key driver of growth for Amazon, and we now estimate more than 30 million paid members worldwide…” Another Wall Street analyst had estimated earlier in the fall 30-40 million Prime members in the U.S. and 40-50 million worldwide.
While e-retail sales in the U.S. were up 15.0% from Nov. 1 through Dec. 21, according to comScore Inc., consumers will be sending back many of those purchases to web retailers. UPS Inc. said today it expects to handle 4 million parcels from shoppers returning holiday purchases in the first week of January, including 800,000 on the peak day, Jan. 6. A UPS survey early in the shopping season found that 62% of online shoppers had returned an online purchase in 2014, up from 51% in 2012.
IBM also documented that more consumers are shopping online via smartphones and tablets. Mobile devices accounted for 57.1% of online traffic to retail sites on Christmas Day, an increase of 18.6 percentage points from a year earlier, and 34.8% of sales, up 20.4 percentage points. In addition, IBM also reported the following statistics about online shopping on Christmas Day: