M-commerce – ready or not?

Over the last few weeks several friends and family members have been invited to upgrade their mobile phones. All, without exception, have chosen one of the latest smartphones. Latest industry stats confirm 1 in 5 people now own a smartphone compared to 1 in 10 last year.

Now I’m sure some will continue to use their phones to simply phone and text but some will be tempted to broaden their mobile horizons. It will probably start with someone helpfully loading “a few useful apps I use all the time” and then they’re off.

A fortnight ago, I was at the Technology for Marketing & Advertising exhibition and attended one of the keynote speaker events. Affiliate Window and vouchercloud presented the latest trends in Performance Marketing on the mobile platform. Affiliate Window currently have over 1,600 companies who sell through their Affiliate network yet only a handful currently have tracking in place to sell via mobile devices. The rest get directed back to the main website, potentially losing sales.

For several years we have been promised that next year will be the year of the mobile. The reality is that each year has seen an increasing need to consider user’s experience of your brand from a mobile device. With ‘M-commerce’ now recognised as industry jargon for buying online from your mobile phone being ready to capitalise on the opportunity is essential.

In January ForeSee, the leading customer experience analytics firm, presented their latest mobile shopping research results. 49% of people surveyed had accessed a retail website from their mobile phone, compared to 32% in 2012 and 23% in 2009. A further 28% indicated they plan to use their mobile visit a retailer website, mobile website or mobile app in future. More than 75% of online shoppers researched as part of the study are already using, or plan to use, their mobile phones to visit retailer websites.

With the importance of mobile in mind (and having analysed the devices used to access our website) we’ve recently launched Coast Digital’s mobile site. We’re really proud of it and hope you like it too; why not let me know what you think of it and how your brand is dealing with your user’s mobile experience? My colleague Robin Moore will be taking a more in depth look at the user experience for mobile visitors to B2B websites over the next few weeks; sign up to our blog to stay updated.