By Karen Moss
The popularity of shopping through mobile devices is continuing to grow at remarkable speed, according to IMRG and Capgemini. Sales through mobile devices have penetrated the five per cent barrier of total e-retail sales for the first time.
In Q4 of 2011 mobile sales accounted for 5.3 per cent of e-retail sales, which has shot up from 0.4 per cent over the space of just two years. This represents a staggering growth rate of 1,320 per cent. Mobile figures include those made through tablet devices.
Visits to retail sites through mobile devices also experienced impressive growth, breaking through the 10 per cent barrier as a percentage of total traffic for the first time. In Q3 of 2011, 8.2 per cent of visits were through mobile; this rose to 11.6 per cent in Q4.
In the previous quarter there was a surge in Click & Collect sales, which shot up to 10.4 per cent of total online sales. In Q4 this dropped to 9.8 per cent. At this time it is unclear whether this option has reached a peak in popularity, or whether it is in relation to Click & Collect options not being available through all retailers during the January sales period.
There was also good news from a fraud perspective, with the number of orders cancelled due to fraud dropping to its lowest level recorded in the two year period – 1.6 per cent in Q4, less than half of that recorded (3.6 per cent) in Q1 of 2010.
Tina Spooner, chief information officer at IMRG, says: “Although mobile was already growing rapidly, this actually marks an acceleration in pace. This could have been influenced by Q4 covering the Christmas period, where lots of consumers would have got access to a tablet device for the first time or advanced phone technology such as the iPhone 4S, which was released just toward the end of Q3.
"Some retailers actually reported that m-commerce sales accounted for as much as nine per cent of their total online sales over the festive period. Really good news on the fraud front too, which is probably a result of retailers implementing more sophisticated fraud prevention systems."