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Retail Technology, Retail technology News

Easter marks mobile retail sales boost

Monday April 16 2012

Mobile sales rise 196% for UK e-retailers in the run up to the first bank holiday of 2012

Mobile phone in Faberge eggMobile sales rise 196% for UK e-retailers in the run up to the first bank holiday of 2012

 

IBM has today revealed analysis it says shows sales from mobile devices rose 196% for UK online retailers in the week leading up to Easter Sunday to drive overall online sales growth of 6% year-on-year.

 

The IT provider compiled its analysis using Coremetrics Benchmark software, which it acquired as part of its WebSphere portfolio in 2012, to examine online shopping trends over the Easter bank holiday period.

 

It found that mobile traffic was 18.9% of total online retail traffic, which itself represents a 205.7% growth over the week leading up to Easter 2011. Meanwhile, mobile sales made up 15.4% of total sales, amounting to 195.5% growth over the week leading up to Easter 2011.

 

Popular mobile devices drive sales

 

Apple’s iPhone emerged as the leading mobile device driving online retail traffic and sales, with 42.1% of total mobile sessions (131.8% growth year-to-year), followed by the iPad with 36.3% of total mobile sessions (280.4% growth year-on-year). Google’s Android came in at third place, accounting for 21.8% of total mobile sessions (306.5% growth year-on-year).

 

Not only did the volume of traffic and sales increase, but the number of items per order also increased from 4.12 to 4.35 and the average order value increased by 7.6% – from £108.45 to £116.71.

 

The analysis also suggested the percentage of site traffic from consumers visiting e-retail websites via a social site referral was up by almost a half (48.2%). However, sales from consumers visiting via a social site referral dropped to just 0.7% of total online sales.

 

Social media grows interactivity

 

IBM said the Coremetrics Benchmark analysis gathers data directly from the websites of more than 150 leading UK retailers, measuring real-time sales data and online marketing results to uncover shopping trends across a wide variety of channels including social media, mobile devices and other online sources where consumers interact with their brands.

 

Chris Withers, IBM's Smarter Commerce head, commented on the Easter Benchmark results by saying consumer spending via mobile is being driven by two forces in addition to the greater penetration of smartphones.

 

“First, retailers are investing in their mobile offerings to improve the customer experience which in turn, encourages greater consumer use,” he said. Second, mobile operators are starting to help consumers to use apps on their smartphones. This drives greater data usage, which grows the mobile operator revenues. And as smartphone and tablet devices improve, we would expect mobile sales to continue these high growth rates.”