Mobile is Eating the World, the E-Commerce Edition

In looking at holiday data from The Custora Pulse, we were struck by how much mobile shopping matured in 2013. More and more people are browsing and buying on mobile devices, and revenue from mobile continues to climb.

To get a sense of just how much e-commerce mobile has grown, we looked at the period of time between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday for 2013 and compared it to the same period in 2012. In 2012, 25% of e-commerce site visits came from a phone or a tablet, while during that same period in 2013, mobile was responsible for 40% of visits.


In 2012, less than one of every five purchases was made on a mobile device, in 2013 that number jumped to one in four. Black Friday specifically (aka “Mobile Friday”) saw over 40% of online transactions coming from mobile.


While these trends were observed during the holiday season, the trend will surely continue in 2014. Here are a few recommendations e-commerce marketers can benefit from as they’re getting ready for this new, mobile reality:


Keep your eye on iOS
While Android did gain a little bit of market share (up to 17% in 2013 from 13% during holiday 2012), iPhone and iPad users continue to drive online mobile retail with 83% and 90% of their respective markets. (tweet this stat)


Prepare for total device convergence
By looking at average order value (AOV) across different devices, we’ve been able to see that shoppers are behaving in similar ways across devices. In 2013 we saw mobile AOV pull almost neck-and-neck with AOV for desktop purchases. The AOV within mobile got closer as well, with tablets seeing just 10% higher AOV compared to phones in 2013, versus 20% more on tablets from 2012. (tweet this stat)


Keep working on converting
While mobile site visits climb, conversion rates continue to lag behind those for desktop shoppers. Desktop users converted at about 25% higher rates than tablet and almost 90% higher than mobile phones during Holiday 2013. (tweet this… you guessed it ;)) It’s imperative that retailers make their mobile sales and checkout process as comfortable for their customers as possible-- think intuitive, secure, and easy to navigate.


The holiday season demonstrated just how big mobile has become. Now it’s time for online retailers and smart marketers to take advantage of this huge opportunity in 2014.
To continue keeping an eye out for mobile and e-commerce stats, sign up to receive updates from The Custora Pulse. The Custora Pulse is the only free, real-time US e-commerce industry benchmark, and is based on transaction and customer data from over 100 US e-commerce retailers. Check it out here.


Craving more Holidata?
For extensive coverage of US e-commerce holiday performance, download our recap report:

A longer form version of this article was recently published on Direct Marketing News. You can check it out here.

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