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25 May 2017
#Internet marketing

Q1 2017 Mobile Commerce Trends

According to Igor Faletski, CEO of Mobify, 2017 is going to be a turning point for mobile commerce in Europe and North America. The figures derived from Mobify’s 2017 Q1 Mobile Commerce Insights Report point to the fact that mobile revenue will surpass desktop on a large scale this year. The report provides valuable tips for those brands and retailers who wish to benefit from the expected increase in mobile revenue.

In this article, we are going to take a closer look at some of those insights.

Mobify suggests 3 points to consider:

  1. By Black Friday 2017, mobile revenue will have overtaken desktop;
  2. Mobile funnel benchmarks should not be overlooked as they can help to identify areas of friction;
  3. Web push notifications are welcomed by those who prefer mobile shopping.

Online sales have coped with recession years considerably better than offline sales, and their increase shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, 2015 witnessed a higher absolute dollar increase from online sales than from offline retail, and by 2019, online is predicted to become the main source of retail sales increase. As Figure 1 shows, online sales have shown an almost exponential growth since 2000 at 16.2% per year. Moreover, the past 5 years have witnessed Ecommerce revenue double (Figure 2).

The source of that 16% increase in online sales is pretty obvious: the growth comes from mobile. Mobile traffic is, in fact, already dominant: in May 2015, mobile traffic overtook desktop traffic for large retailers. In March 2016, the same thing happened to medium retailers. Finally, mobile traffic surpassed desktop for small retailers in May 2016.

But what about mobile revenue? When will it catch up with desktop?

Mobify’s report suggests it will happen as early as in the second half of 2017, just in time for Black Friday.

However, just like mobile traffic, mobile revenue will not increase simultaneously for each retailer in the market. Mobile leaders will experience the effects as early as in Q3 2017, while Q4 2017 will bring those effects to mobile median. As for mobile laggards, they will have to survive till Q3 2019 in order to see their mobile revenue overtake desktop.

Here comes the big question: what should a retailer do to become a mobile leader and reap the benefits of mobile revenue increase as early as possible? Fluent’s 2017 Devices and Demographics report suggests 4 factors that would encourage more consumers to shop via mobile:

  1. Easier navigation. Attention to UX along with personalized content via location and behavior data are the keys to success;
  2. Increased speed. Customers generally dislike pages that take too long to load, so speeding up the process should be a priority. For the first page load, Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) can be used, resulting in an almost nonexistent loading time. Subsequent pages can be sped up via a Progressive Web App (PWA), which can lead to a 2-4x decrease in loading times by pre-loading content;
  3. One-click purchases. Services like Apple Pay, Payment Request API and Android Pay offer users a quick and simple way to transfer money without filling out long forms, thus making mobile shopping more attractive;
  4. Enhanced Security. Shoppers want to feel safe about their payments. Studies show that large lock icons and frequent usage of the word “secure” at checkout make the experience more appealing to customers.

Now, let’s take a look at the mobile funnel. Figure 5 shows that the product display page (PDP) is visited almost 4 times more often than the homepage; it also points out that there is a drop-off between cart and checkout in 57% sessions, and between checkout and conversion in 34% sessions.

In other words, the mobile funnel is broken. Customer behavior is hard to track, as shoppers tend to enter and leave at different stages. The course of action suggested by Mobify is to optimize popular entry points (such as PDPs) and to identify problem areas where friction resides.

This leads us to the third point highlighted in Mobify’s report: web push notifications. Those, along with the aforementioned means of speeding up and enhancing the shopping experience (AMP, PWA, etc.), can be utilized to optimize the mobile funnel. However, web push notifications are a relatively new concept, so a few criteria should be clarified before analyzing the benchmarks:

Opt-in rate:

Number of users who opt in / Number of unique users asked to opt in

View rate:

Number of unique messages displayed / Number of unique messages sent

Click-through rate (CTR):

Number of unique clicks / Number of messages sent

Figure 6 suggests that opt-in rate is 3.2 times higher in mobile than in desktop; mobile opt-in rate is also 2.4 times higher than tablet.

As shown in Figure 7, mobile view rate exceeds desktop by 86% and tablet by 35%.

Mobile CTR is more than 3 times higher than tablet or desktop, as shown in Figure 8.

Figure 9 shows that subscribers are likely to return twice per quarter through web push notifications.

Mobify’s report regards web push notifications as a valuable tool that can convert traffic into revenue. Given the dominant position of mobile traffic, web push notifications should be viewed as a highly efficient channel for engaging mobile shoppers.

Here are Mobify’s tips for working with web push notifications:

  1. Automatically triggered notifications can save a sale if the customer chooses to abandon a cart;
  2. Event-based sales and discounts (like Black Friday) are the perfect time to send out web push notifications;
  3. Opt-in, view and click-through rates can be optimized by observing the best practices regarding web push notifications.

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