Mobile Site is the future to Invest for Retailers – PWC 2017

With the number of online shoppers growing every minute Retailers are trying to adapt between brick + mortar and click + mortar. Though the physical stores are not really in the position of fading away completely, they are facing a crisis due to the growth of the former.

PWC’s survey conducted with 25000 respondents across 29 different countries have listed Mobile site as their first Investment option for retailers. The investment option is not just for the current survival but to thrive in the years ahead.

With the number of smart phone users increasing every year, shopping through a mobile device is also increasing. In 2017, purchase made through mobile device have exceeded the purchase made through tablets and are catching up on Laptops/Desktops. The survey was taken among two different types of shoppers Daily and weekly shoppers. Among Daily shoppers, the percentage of mobile and Laptop/Desktop users are equal and are leading those who shop through tablets.

Among weekly shoppers, mobile usage stands second to Laptops/Desktops. Comparing the current survey results with the results since 2013, we can infer that the usage of Desktops/Laptops have stagnated while there has been a steep rise in Mobile shopping. This shows that the trend is shifting towards mobile shopping. This indirectly demands retailers to have a mobile responsive site.

Looking at the process carried out through their mobile device, product research tops with 44%. The second most usage of 38% is to compare the prices with the competitor products.

Surprisingly the third most usage comes for payment process accounting for 37% of respondents. Looking from a spider cam, we can see that the entire purchase journey is happening through the mobile phone, from research to comparison to completing the purchase through payments. This shows how comfortable people are today using their smart phone for online shopping.

The key thing here Is to decide between going for a Mobile app or a mobile website. The report has made it clear that going for the mobile website is the best investment plan. Looking at the graph one can understand, websites are leading the pack by a long way in online commerce platform. Mobile apps stand next but only with 25% close to catalogues. This shows the gap between website and apps.

According to Statista, an average US individual uses only 10 apps per day and 30 apps in a month. This is a fractional portion compared to the number of applications available on the app store and play store. In total there are more than 5 million applications available for smartphones and the individual uses only 10 applications per day. Breaking down by category, we find the 10 apps being dominated by social media and entertainment categories.

The competition persisting in the application world so high that users prefer using the website rather than downloading the application. Yet, the customers also have complained about the mobile website usage. The PwC survey states around the globe, users have picked screen size (40%) as the greatest obstacle next to poor user experience (26%). This paves way for the scope and opportunity available in the space.

“We’re at a tipping point with mobile”. “Consumers are becoming extremely comfortable using their mobile device not only for searching for prices and product availability, but for actually completing the transaction. In fact, over one-third of our U.S. respondents said that they use their mobile devices for purchasing, up from previous surveys.” says Steve Barr, PwC’s U.S. retail and consumer leader.

With the smart phone usage in online shopping space growing steeply and the scope for improvements stated clear, the market is all set for a boom in the upcoming years.

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