A research report sponsored by NetSuite Inc., the industry’s leading provider of cloud-based financials/ERP software, revealed that the UK high street is expecting £11 billion in growth from m-commerce in the year ahead. The report is based on economic models provided by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) and primary research of 200 UK high street retail managers, including seven of the top 10 retailers in the UK, conducted by Vanson Bourne and announced by NetSuite.
The report reveals that the rise in sales is linked to an increase in the number of mobile services offered by retailers and smartphones and tablet penetration in the UK. The report revealed that of those surveyed 73% already had a mobile-optimized eCommerce website or applications and that the number rose to 80% when including those who are planning to launch one or the other in the coming 12 months.
These numbers give struggling UK retailers some hope, after the losses they have been suffering since 2008. However, another report by UK retailer Debenhams revealed that while consumers who are buying through their mobile phones might bring increased sales figures, they are also more fickle. Debenhams uncovered that mobile buyers are shopping more frequently and bringing in more money than those in high street stores, however they are not as loyal and consistent and will easily change brands if their mobile experience is not up to scratch.
Speaking to Debenhams, Rav Dhaliwal, Multi-Channel Marketing Manager at New Look, says, “Retailers want their stores to be visible to customers all the time whether they’re in front of a PC or on their way home or out and about in the evening or weekend on their smartphone. The service has to be seamless, though. You need to have the same experience as you would do as a shopper on the online site. People need to be able to access their account and the service needs to take them through to checkout as easily as possible.”
Both reports emphasize the need for an optimized mobile experience in order to get customers to spend and remain loyal. As we reported back in September, UK retailers need to be mobile-ready by Christmas if they want to cash-in on the holiday sales.