Retail is still ground zero for mobile impact.
It’s not just the overall trend of consumers spending more time on their phones, it’s also that they’re doing a lot of research and browsing when in a store as they shop.
The amount of time spent on desktop over the last two years has decreased by 1% in the U.S., based on the latest comScore stats. But during that same time, mobile time spent has increased 78%.
Consumers spend 60% of their shopping time on mobile devices, but that’s mostly for product research, comparison shopping and browsing. When it comes to an actual online retail purchase, 84% of the dollars go to desktop.
That essentially is one of the complexities of mobile on commerce these days. Desktop and in-store purchasing rule the day, but mobile impacts everything along the way.
One of the fundamental reasons fewer consumers buy directly from their phone is that it’s not always that easy.
Very few brands have invested in single-page checkout, with the average number of pages to check out tending to range from two to four, according to the third annual L2 Intelligence Report: Mobile 2016, which evaluated the approach and performance of 68 brands across four categories on mobile.
The average mobile checkout requires a consumer to input anywhere from 13 to 16 fields, according to L2. Fewer than a third of those typically leverage the native drop-down fields and iOS-enabled navigation to make that experience more seamless.
For example, L2 found that the fashion checkout on average requires a consumer to input 16 fields, 69% of which are text fields that require the typing of information.
By category, fashion had the lowest number of pages (2.3) for checkout while retail had the highest (3.4). More significantly, the number of sellers who offer one-page checkout is relatively low. Here’s the breakdown of those with one-page checkout, by category:
The point is that checking out on mobile can be a painful process. By vertical, here are the mobile site checkout average number of fields:
The end of the checkout process obviously involves payment and one in three brands miss the mark there by not offering any expedited payment options, according to L2. The good news is that the majority do offer some form of expedited payments, with the large majority (90%) offering PayPal, and the distance to the next one (Visa Checkout) is quite a distance at 14%. Here are the verticals that offer expedited mobile payments:
As a benchmark, 23% of the businesses surveyed accept Apple Pay in store, meaning that most still don’t.
At checkout, email also plays a role, since most (86%) of retailers require an email just to start the process.
The core issue with purchasing via smartphones is not starting the shopping process; it’s finishing it.This column was originally published in MobileShopTalk on July 5, 2016.