Retailers understand the importance of having an online and offline presence today. Omnichannel retailing is not a new phenomenon anymore. Globally, this form of retailing has allowed retailers to expedite sales through both the online and offline medium. In-store shopping has been there from the ages. When it comes to online shopping, much mention needs to be made about mobile shopping as it has gained enormous popularity over the world. Mobile/Smart phones account for a massive percentage of the overall shopper engagement.
Further, mobile shopping can be analyzed as shopping done through mobile websites, and shopping done through mobile apps. Few years back, customers preferred mobile apps mainly for availing various loyalty and reward points. But they never denied the convenience offered by mobile sites. Today, the need for mobile sites is far superior to that of apps. Let’s find out.
Mobile Shopping – ‘An integral part of online shopping’
Before we talk about the importance of a well-optimized mobile site, let’s see how mobile phones have become quite the integral part of online shopping today. Latest findings from the Total Retail Report by PWC reveal –
- When it comes to daily shoppers, majority of global respondents say that they shop more frequently with a mobile phone (3%) than with a tablet (2%)
- When it comes to weekly shoppers, mobile shopping (11%) has overtaken tablets (9%) easily and is marching towards PC (16%)
Omnichannel retailing has helped strike a balance between the sales that are generated in-store and online. A five-year comparison by PWC show how physical stores have continued to be more popular over the years. This must be attributed to the high in-store engagement that customers enjoy because of an enhanced in-store experience provided by the retailers. The comparison also indicates how online shopping through PC has continued to lose popularity. It also shows how shopping through tablets has almost been inconsequential. However, shopping through mobile phones depict a steady rise over the years. Consider the following illustration.
Mobile Website – ‘Second to Stores and way ahead of apps in terms of Sales Generation’
The primary objective of all retailers is to increase revenue by expediting sales. When it comes to online shopping, there isn’t much competition prevailing between mobile sites and mobile apps anymore. The number of app downloads are decreasing and the importance of mobile sites is on the rise. A latest survey by PWC/SAP on retailers resorting to omnichannel retailing reveal that the two main channels of sale generation for them are the stores and the website.
The maximum generation of sales comes from the store. As discussed earlier, this is a testament to the offline retailers who have managed to maintain elevated levels of in-store engagement for the customers, thereby scoring more conversions. Besides, retailers understand the significance of providing a one of a kind in-store experience to customers today to continue being popular. As per the survey, the second most productive medium of sales generation is the website. Consider the following illustration for more details.
Stores account for a massive 79% of the sale generated. Website is in the second place with 73% of sale. The third place belong to mobile apps (25%) but it’s way behind that of websites and just ahead of catalogue at number four with 24%. This indicates the importance of websites today in generating sales. Mobile apps have fallen away from the limelight and cannot be considered as a competition for websites anymore. With mobile shopping set to grow in the time ahead, it will only be wise for retailers to optimize their websites for mobiles. Retailers who look to invest in mobile sites will surely be placed at a favorable position in the time to come.