Smartphones Are Closing the Retail Ecommerce Device Gap - eMarketer
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Smartphones Are Closing the Retail Ecommerce Device Gap

PCs, tablets still command more ecommerce revenues, but trends are looking good for smartphones

May 12, 2015 | Retail & Ecommerce

Smartphones are far from shoppers’ No. 1 choice when it comes to ecommerce conversions, but they’re making up ground, according to Q1 2015 data from MarketLive.

US Retail Ecommerce Metrics, By Device, Q1 2014 & Q1 2015

Smartphones have the lowest conversion rate of any device—at 1.0% in Q1, it was just half the rate on tablets and even lower compared to desktop or laptop PCs. But it has also more than doubled since the same period the previous year, even ask PC conversion rates fell and tablet rates climbed by just 18.1%. And this wasn’t the only metric where smartphones were closing the retail gap.

Average order values grew faster on smartphones than on any other device, though only slightly faster than on tablets. Meanwhile, average revenue per visit was up 147.0% on smartphones—far higher than the growth rate on tablets, and on a different wavelength from PC revenues per visit, which were falling. Average order values and revenues per visit were still lowest on smartphones, but the figures are coming closer to striking distance.

And cart abandonment, which was up slightly on PCs and down by less than 1% on tablets, dropped by 3.4% on smartphones. Again, smartphones still perform worse by this metric than other devices do, but the trend is moving in an encouraging direction for retailers hoping mobile phone–toting shoppers will tap to buy.

According to MarketLive, traffic from social sources made up an increasing share of revenues coming from smartphones, as did traffic from organic search and email. On tablets, social and email accounted for growing pieces of the revenue pie. Desktop and laptop revenue share was growing for all traffic sources but direct.

eMarketer expects that 78.3 million people in the US will make a purchase this year via smartphone, while 99.7 million will do so via tablet. The two groups overlap; in total, 121.8 million people will make at least one purchase this calendar year via a mobile device.

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