Phones Drive 94% Increase In Online Traffic

Retail’s worst kept secret is the exponential growth of mobile commerce, but with more devices released every year, what platform should businesses focus on for maximum success?

According to a recent report from eCommerce solutions firm Demandware, the answer is decidedly smartphones. In an investigation into the mobile platforms that consumers flock to when building and placing orders, Demandware found that smartphones were responsible for 94 percent of overall year-over-year traffic growth to retail sites, 74 percent of the increase in online basket creation and 47 percent of the industry’s combined order growth on mobile.

“Consumers have adopted phones as their shopping companion,” Rick Kenney, industry principal for intelligence and innovation at Demandware, said in a statement. “Since the phone has a home in our pockets or purses, it affords us the opportunity to shop at any moment. The tablet has a limited orbital of context, generally the home, and typically stationary to the living room and/or bedroom—and overall sales of tablets is dwarfed by phones. The phone is essentially everywhere.”

The future appears bright for eCommerce conducted exclusively from smartphones, as the addition of frictionless checkout processes through mobile payments could pave the way for even higher traffic and order growth figures. While computer-based retail traffic remained relatively static, with 65 percent of all orders placed through a laptop or desktop, smartphones continued to chip away at tablet-based sales, siphoning 10 percent of traffic and 2 percent of orders. However, even computers experienced a 7-percent annual decrease in orders, which could give rise to the smartphone as the single dominant mobile commerce platform of the future.

Demandware’s findings may serve as yet another indication that consumers have reached a point where they are comfortable using their smartphones for just about anything involving their finances. From personal banking to retail shopping, it seems there’s nothing standing in mobile’s way.

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