Mobile Retail Penetration Drops for First Time This Decade

mCommerce-Online-Shopping-Trolley-Retail.jpgThe percentage of online retail sales made through mobile devices fell in Q1 2016, the first time a decrease has been recorded since tracking began in 2010, according to new research from IMRG Capgeminis Quarterly Benchmark report.

49.6 per cent of online retail sales were completed through mobile devices during Q1, down from 51.3 per cent in the previous quarter. There was also a slight fall in the percentage of visits to online retail sites through mobile devices, from 65.6 per cent to 64.6 per cent.

The fall can likely be explained by the increasing split in sales growth rates between tablets and smartphones, with sales through tablet devices growing just three per cent over the quarter, a record low, compared to smartphone sales, which grew 83 per cent.

The growth of click and collect orders through multi-channel retailers also factored in, with 22 per cent of online orders carried out this way, a number which has held more or less steady for the past year.

“Back in 2010, mobile devices accounted for less than one per cent of online retail sales and this increased rapidly over a few years to exceed 50 per cent in the last quarter,” said Tina Spooner, chief information officer at IMRG. “However, these latest results appear to track the effects of some displacement activity we are seeing in relation to sales made through mobile devices.

“While the majority of these sales still come through tablets, shoppers are increasingly using their smartphones in situations where they would previously have used a tablet – the screen sizes have become larger, retailers have focused on optimising the experience for smartphone users and consumers are becoming increasingly confident in using these devices for a wide range of activities.”