Amazon and Argos have topped the charts for retail app downloads in the UK in Q4 2014, driven by the holiday rush and simplified, seamless checkout experiences that allow for omni-channel strategies.
The figures, provided by App Annie and Kantar Retail, place Boots at third place, with Morrisons' Match & More app and Asda completing the top five. The top 25 was dominated by department stores, as well as supermarkets and fashion retailers, with only B&Q and Screwfix deviating from this trend.
During the 2014 Christmas period, mobile devices accounted for around £8bn in retail sales, a 55 per cent increase over the same period in 2013, demonstrating the growth in shoppers taking advantage of mobile retail. Mobile now accounts for around a quarter of total online retail sales in the UK.
60 per cent of top retailers offered Click & Collect services through their apps, as this service becomes increasingly popular with consumers looking for the most convenient path to purchases. While this is the most popular way stores are blurring the lines between digital and physical retail, features like unlockable content and barcode scanners for reviews and recommendations create enriched, engaging in-store experiences and drive brand loyalty.
"One of the key issues in the current retail market is the multiple touchpoints at which consumers can interact with retailers before and during purchase," said App Annie and Kantar in their report on top retailers and the app economy. "Consumers now expect a seamless experience across mobile apps, mobile web, desktop web and in-store contact with retailers.
"Accordingly, retailers are developing omni-channel strategies in which each of these touchpoints is a pillar in a unified and integrated customer experience. Neglecting any one of these pillars may have a substantial impact on sales in other channels."