Monday, 10 December 2012

Manic Monday

Over the past few years, the first Monday of December has become a reference in the Christmas calendar and is now know as Cyber Monday (Mega Monday here in the UK). It marks the beginning of the Christmas shopping fever and has become established as one of the busiest online shopping day of the year. A source from play.com indicates that Mondays in December are the busiest days for online retailers. It also breaks records year on year, and this year is no exceptions, especially when we look at the Mobile Commerce channel.

At the beginning of November, IMRG, the UK retail association forecast a £920 million spend by consumers using mobile devices in the first two weeks of December alone; nearly a quarter of all £4.6 billion in online shopping.

This can be illustrated by reports from ClickTale which indicated that QVC (a leader in catalogue retail) saw overall sales jump 25.6% last year, resulting mainly from consumers shopping from mobile phones and tablets. Reportedly, QVC announced that some $380 million of its $2.16 billion in global online sales (almost 20%) came from mobile users.

It was also covered on Finextra that Department store giant John Lewis has seen mobile traffic and orders to its site more than treble over the last year and a third of customers are now shopping using handheld devices.

For some companies, Christmas even came earlier than expected. Take for example PayPal, who has seen its greatest sales day in company history - for mobile payments - on black Friday. PayPal’s mobile payment volume increased by a whopping 193 percent compared to 2011.

If these examples don’t convince you of the increasing trend of mobile shopping and the prominent place it is taking in the way we shop these days, maybe these figures will: Mobile Payment:

The infographic from Developing Revenues reviews the 6 key current mobile payment options and shows their potential rating if used to optimum effect...

It will therefore be an understatement to say that mobile commerce has come a long way since it was born in 1997 when coca cola vending machine first accepted payments via SMS in Finland. In 2012, one-third of people have made a purchase with a Smartphone and with the sales of smart devices expected to reach 686 million by the end of the year, now is the time for any business to consider mobile commerce (if not already done) as it is fast becoming one of the favourite buying channel for consumers.

With this in mind, here are our top tips for a happy mobile shopping this Christmas:
  • Do your research –  ensure you choose a payment provider that offers mobile acceptance as part of their standard offering so you are not left behind
  • Look out for additional promotional services – QR or Mobile Bar Codes can also be a powerful tool for businesses. These enable customers to make instant purchases, from offline marketing material like TV or magazine ads, exhibitions and brochure ware.
  • Must have – Mobile landing page. Mobile landing pages give businesses the ability to serve their mobile customers with personalised and search-specific content. These will engage your customers and provide them with a unique enhanced shopper experience which is a necessity these days.
  • Choose the security option that suits your business best – Prioritise a mobile-friendly payment page. Partner with a provider of a validated solution (i.e. P2PE solution) or use an Approved Point of Interaction Device.

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