What Makes Mobile So Vital For E-Commerce?

mobile ecommerce

Since Apple unveiled the first iPhone seven years ago, the smartphone has become one of the most ubiquitous pieces of technology in the world – followed closely thereafter by the tablet in 2010. These days, just about everyone has at least one piece of mobile technology – and anyone who doesn’t is considered an oddity, at best.

They’re in our workplace. They’re in our schools and homes. They’re at our restaurants, our parks, and our vacation spots. They are quite literally everywhere. Slowly but surely, they’re even starting to replace desktop computers for regular Internet browsing.

It’s not just convenience that’s driving this craze – though it certainly plays a part. It’s a whole combination of factors. On the one end, we’re seeing an ever-increasing amount of pressure to do more at our jobs; an unwritten, unspoken expectation that employees more frequently work at home, during their off hours – a time when, not even a decade ago, everyone was free to relax. On the other end, there’s social media – in many ways a sort of digital addiction – and our desire for constant online communication and stimulation.

Of course, the mobile games market is also a large contributor. Now, rather than idling about when we’re waiting for the bus or using the washroom – or worse, talking to one of our peers – we can simply fire up Angry Birds or Words With Friends to pass the time.

So where does E-Commerce fit into all this?

That’s easy. Just as we’re using our mobile tech to more frequently browse the web, we’re also using them a great deal more for online shopping. The percentage of online retail sales that take place via mobile devices is expected to grow to 25% by 2017 – and even larger still after that. While it’s undoubtedly true that some of these sales simply replaced those which would have happened elsewhere, that doesn’t account for all of said sales.

The truth is, mobile users represent a growing market for online commerce – a market that shows no signs of slowing its growth at any point in the near future. One could even go so far as to say that they’re one of the most significant driving factors in the growth of online spending; a large part of E-commerce is about convenience, and what’s more convenient than being able to make a purchase at any time, no matter where you are?

It’s this reason – this concurrent growth – that makes mobile technology such a boon for E-Commerce; it’s for this reason that, as the operator of a digital storefront, you can’t afford to ignore mobile users.

Since the first smartphone was released in 2007, mobile technology has enjoyed an almost meteoric rise to prominence. These days. it’s rare to find someone who doesn’t own a smartphone or tablet – and the majority of those people have used their devices for web browsing and shopping. As the underlying technology grows more powerful, it’s only going to become ever more ubiquitous – meaning that if one ignores mobile, they do so at their own peril.

 

Image credit: Richard Tanzer Fotografie