Data Monday: Mobile Commerce

by Luke Wroblewski October 16, 2011

Whenever I talk to people about the growth of the mobile Internet, it's inevitable the question of commerce comes up. Yes, there's a lot more usage but are people buying on mobile? Let's see...

  • In 2009, 1% of Dungarees' (an apparel retailer) web traffic was from smartphones. In 2010 it grew to 4% and this year it’s at 8%. (source)
  • JetBlue Airways' smartphone Web traffic is at 10%. Crutchfield's is at 12%. And Fandango's is at a hefty 40%. (source)
  • The increase in shopping on Gap's mobile site is one of the major reasons why the site tripled its online conversions in the last year. (source)
  • Blue Nile sold a diamond ring that cost more than $300,000 via mobile and sees large jewelry purchases, running from a few thousand to tens of thousands of dollars, via smartphones happen quite frequently. (source)
  • eBay's global mobile sales generated nearly $2 billion (gross merchandise volume) in 2010, up from $600 million in 2009. (source)
  • eBay is on its way to process around $4 billion in mobile sales in 2011, double the number it logged last year. Three purchases are made through eBay’s mobile applications every second. 2,600 vehicles are purchased through eBay’s core iPhone apps every week. 13 pieces of clothing, shoes or accessories are sold every minute through eBay’s mobile apps. (source)
  • It’s not just buyers using eBay’s apps. As of September 2011, eBay sellers are listing over 700,000 new items through their mobile applications on a weekly basis. (source)

What About Tablets?

Nearly half of tablet owners made or completed a purchase on their tablet. Tablet owners exhibited significant use of their devices throughout the entire online shopping process – from doing the initial planning, conducting product and store research, making price comparisons, to finally transacting. In the past month, more than half of tablet owners looked up product or price information for a specific store (56 percent) and read customer ratings and reviews while on a tablet (54 percent). (source)

Looking Forward

  • Google forecasts that 44% of all December searches for last-minute gifts and store locations will be mobile. Additionally, they project that 15% of all searches made on Nov. 25, the Friday after Thanksgiving, will come from mobile devices. In 2010, 5.6% of consumers used a mobile device to visit a retailer’s web site on Black Friday. (source)
  • Mobile commerce payments for physical items are expected to reach $170bn by 2015 (source)