Smartphone and tablet users are becoming increasingly influential over the shape of the e-commerce market across the pond in America, according to the latest figures published by ComScore.
It revealed that 29% of US consumers who made purchases from Amazon over the course of June this year were exclusively using mobile devices to do so.
This represents almost 43 million people who have ditched desktop computers as a means for browsing the web and buying products in favour of portable platforms.
Analysts pointed out that if you include Amazon customers who visited from both mobile and desktop devices over the course of June, the number using smartphones and tablets is actually higher than the percentage who only access its e-commerce services from a PC or laptop.
Although Amazon’s user base is gradually reorienting itself to be mobile-only, it is not the only e-commerce outlet to be experiencing this sea change. Ticketmaster’s 39% mobile-only saturation puts it well ahead of the curve, indicating that there is some diversity in terms of how people use sites and services.
The report points out that although a few major online retailers saw big gains in the mobile space back in June, this is not universally the case and the impact that this is having on the e-commerce market can differ greatly, depending on where you look.
But the point to take away from this is that the sites which are gaining least from the m-commerce revolution are those that have yet to fully embrace the idea that e-commerce web design needs to cater to visitors who are using smartphones and tablets.
An incremental increase in mobile sales can turn into a flood if webmasters are willing to bite the bullet and accept that they need to create a mobile optimised experience, rather than one which solely deals with desktop visitors.
The large number of Amazon customers who are using a combination of mobile and desktop devices to carry out their shopping might imply that there is still power left in the desktop market, but it is likely that sales would not be as significant, if people could not easily browse for products from their smartphones and then complete the transaction later using their PC or laptop.
It is also worth remembering that the US is not even the most mobile-engaged nation and m-commerce can be even more impactful elsewhere, so the need for e-commerce sites to adjust and adapt is more pressing than ever.
There is a strong argument for the idea that all websites, not just those looking to sell products and services directly to consumers, should be optimised for mobile platforms.
Sites which are fuelled by cash earned from ad clicks will need to make their pages easy to navigate using a touchscreen, so that visitors who prefer to browse from smartphones and tablets are not alienated, but are rather welcomed into the fold and shown that there is a desire to keep them onboard.