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Cross-Device Analysis Shows Role of Mobile in France's Ecommerce

Almost half of digital purchases in Q4 2016 involved multiple devices

March 20, 2017 | Retail & Ecommerce

It’s official—again. The smartphone is the fastest-growing ecommerce enabler in France.

According to a recent Criteo report, 28% of digital purchases in France during Q4 2016 were carried out on a mobile device, compared with 26% in Q4 2015. Smartphone sales made up nearly one-fifth of all digital sales in France that quarter, up 22% from a year earlier. By contrast, tablet sales continued to fall.

Retail Ecommerce Transaction Share in France, by Device, Q4 2015 & Q4 2016 (% of total)

Mobile devices are increasingly central to the shopping and buying habits of all digital consumers in the country, Criteo found. Some 45% of online transactions in France in Q4 2016 were made with two or more devices.

Users of smartphones, tablets and PCs employed multiple devices in the purchase process in roughly equal measure. That is, digital buyers were equally likely to turn to additional devices at some point before their final transaction.

Multidevice Share of Ecommerce Transactions in France, by Primary Device, Q4 2016 (% of total)

Of the respondents polled by Criteo, 61% had started their buying process on a PC, while 26% initiated the process on a smartphone, and 12% had first used a tablet. Interestingly, 20% of cross-device purchases finalized on a PC began with activity on a smartphone, while 35% of those carried out on a smartphone began on a PC.

Online retailers that offered a comprehensive range of mobile services, including transactional functionality in both a mobile site and an app, saw 55% of transactions taken place in their app, compared with 45% made on their mobile site.

Mobile and cross-device shopping haven’t drastically altered the list of goods favored by digital buyers, though. Sporting goods were the most common mobile purchases, followed by fashion and luxury items, and homewares.

Karin von Abrams

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