Mom And Dad Chose Mobile For Back-To-School Shopping

According to the new IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark, based on traffic and sales across 3,000 websites during the month of August, Back-To-School US retail online sales for August were up 11.9% as compared to the same period last year, while mobile sales jumped 42%, accounting for a quarter of all such online sales. At the same time smartphones became the choice for the mobile shopper, surpassing the tablet both in browsing and purchases.

Mobile devices running Apple Inc.’s iOS system generated significantly more sales and traffic than those running Google Inc.’s Android software. Shoppers on iOS devices accounted for 19.1% of overall online revenue, spending an average of $116.49, while Android users accounted for 6.1% of online traffic, with an average order value of $96.11.

Some of the details in the Digital Analytics Benchmark report showed that:

  • Both moms and dads continue to do more and more of their back to school shopping via their mobile device, with mobile sales were up nearly 42%, reaching 25.3% of all online sales. Moms and dads also used their mobile devices to browse deals, with traffic accounting for 49.4% of all online traffic, up more than 19% compared to the same period last year.
  • Smartphones drove 36.9% of all online traffic compared to tablets at 12.5%. When it comes to purchases, for the first time smartphones also came out on top, driving 12.8% of all online sales versus tablets at 12.5%.
  • Traffic from mobile devices at 49.4% nearly eclipsed that of the desktop, which reached 50.3%. Last year desktop traffic far exceeded mobile devices, by 58.2% to 41.5%. With consumers counting equally on both channels to research purchases, retailers must be prepared to deliver relevancy to both channels, at any given point in time.
  • Despite the momentum of smartphones, moms and dads still count on their tablet when it comes to buying higher priced items for their kids. Tablet users averaged $116.97 per order, versus smartphone users, who averaged $105.54 per order. Desktop claimed the highest figure with average order values of $134.25.

Supporting these overall trends, the report also showed real-time trends across three of the hottest retail categories for Back-to-School purchases:

  • Department Stores: August total online sales in Department Stores grew by 13.7% over the same period last year, with mobile sales exceeding 30%.
  • Home Goods: August total online sales of Home Goods grew by more than 12.6% over the same period last year, with mobile sales reaching 22.5%.
  • August total Apparel online sales grew by more than 15% over the same period last year, with mobile sales contributing 25.3%.

For more information about the study, please visit IBM here.



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