mobile commerce

Two thirds of people now own a smart phone. Anyone who owns knows how incredibly addictive they are. We check them around 40 times a day on average. The top uses for them are checking social media, banking, and shopping. As the internet landscape is fast changing into a more mobile one, Google now ranks mobile friendly sites above their non-optimised competition.

Fastest growing e-commerce segment

The most online shopping in the UK is done via smart phones and tablets. Ebay Q2 results for 2016 showed that over 50% of eBay sales now involve a mobile device. Mobile commerce is the fastest growing sector of e commerce, with 15% yearly growth.

Retail experts credit the increase in mobile commerce to increasing smart phone screen size, improved mobile internet speeds and more retailers optimising sites for mobile customers.

Mark Felix, online sales director at John Lewis says: “mobile commerce is undoubtedly our fastest growing sales channel.”

Second screen shopping

Using minute-by-minute data information and by breaking down user activity by device, eBay tracked shopper behaviour at precise TV moments, and gained valuable insights into how mobile devices are used to shop on eBay.

During the season 7 premiere of The Great British Bake Off in August 2016, eBay saw a 67% rise in consumer interest in baking products while the show was on air. This soared to 133% during the hour immediately afterwards. The day after the finale of season six of Game of Thrones aired, eBay UK recorded a sixfold increase in searches for Game of Thrones merchandise.

71% of these searches were via mobile. People were watching television, picking up their phones and tablets and searching for items while they were watching. The convenience of mobile devices makes mobile commerce far better for impulse buys.

But many retailers are still missing out on mobile commerce. According to research by Centre for Retail Research (CRR) and, the UK retail industry is sacrificing £6.6bn per year due to lack of investment into its mobile offering.

The same research found that 73% of UK shoppers predict they will spend more on mobile this year, and 15% now use mobile as their primary shopping device. 40% of those consumers said that they feel the mobile experience could be improved.

Data from Walker Sands revealed that while cash use is on the decline and mobile payments are on the rise, eight out of 10 consumers have concerns about mobile payment services, with the most popular concerns being security (57%) and privacy (48%).

e-commerce is becoming m-commerce

EBay know that mobile is the future of online shopping, and are working to make sure that they offer customers the best mobile shopping experience they can. The eBay app now shows an automatically generated summary description of your product, making it easier for customers to browse and buy quickly. Changes are also being made to eBay’s active content policy, so that from June 2017, eBay will be free from potentially risky active content. Addressing customer’s primary fears of security and privacy of mobile transactions is undoubtedly a smart move, and will encourage more to buy from eBay using mobile devices.

So with sales from mobile devices set to account for 45% of all e-commerce by 2020, translating to $248 billion, what can you do to ensure your store doesn’t miss out on mobile sales?

Consider button size

It is no good having a mobile site with buttons so small that they are difficult to read or click without accidentally clicking onto something else

Words – less is more

People scroll a product description less on a mobile device than on any other kind of device. Be sure that your product description sells the product benefits without long paragraphs. Consider using bullet points.

Everything in its place

Don’t make the description extra long by tagging on information about postage or returns. eBay have areas for this. Repeating them in the description will only bore customers.

Test on multiple devices

Check how your store looks on different sized screens, on the ebay app and in a browser. Frooition eBay designs are all fully dynamic, meaning that they work across a range of devices.

Remove active content

If your listings contain active content, this will need to be removed and replaced with active content policy compliant elements. Active content poses security risks and gives a poor experience for mobile customers, and so eBay are banning it.  From June 2017, active elements will not be rendered by eBay as intended. Frooition have been working closely with eBay on active content policy changes. We continue to offer the following great features on listings without any use of Flash, JavaScript, Form Actions or plug-ins:

  • Responsive mobile design
  • Zooming image gallery
  • Product information tabs
  • Dynamic store categories that update across all listings
  • Dynamic, intelligent, cross promotion that offer related items, not random un-related products

In addition, we are  offering listing rescue service for sellers with any eBay design. We can strip Active Content from  existing listings and apply new design on your behalf, saving you weeks or months of work.

Confidence in mobile commerce is growing, and eBay are planning for dramatic growth in this area.

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