Commentary

Mobile Retail Hits 52%, Tops Desktop at 48%

Mobile commerce continues to grow while the opposite is true for desktop activity.

A few months back, the tides turned as desktop visits to retail website fell below the 50% point as mobile took over.

That shift is continuing with mobile now accounting for 52% of all visits, according to the latest Branding Brand mobile commerce index. That regular tracking report is based on an analysis of 50 websites with 72 million visits and $86 million in revenue.

For perspective, when the tracking started almost five years ago, desktop accounted for more than 90% of website visits.

And for traffic last month, smartphones dominated at 38% compared to visits from tablets at 14%.

In addition to the raw numbers, the percentages of change  of website visits by device are significant.

  • Smartphone – Up 27%
  • Desktop – Down 9%
  • Tablet --  Down 18%

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However, when it comes to actual revenue, the desktop is still well at the top.

While desktop revenue led with 73%, mobile revenue generated 27% of all online revenue, an increase of 23% from a year earlier.

Consistent with other recent research, mobile revenue is now almost even from smartphones (13%) and tablets (14%). It wasn’t that long ago that tablets totally dominated mobile commerce activity.

But the market trend here is significant as well. Here’s the year-over-year change in revenue by device:

  • Smartphone – Up 63%
  • Desktop – Down 6%
  • Tablet --  No change 0%

Another interesting aspect in this tracking data is that it doesn’t include the actual purchase influence along the way.

We know from numerous studies that consumers are using their phones in all phases of what I call The Mobile Shopping Life Cycle.

Even without that impact factored in, the percentages of growth in online searching and purchasing via mobile continue their rise.

Desktop searching and purchasing are hardly going away. Shoppers simply are using their phones more during shopping process. 

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