Consider these stats for just a second; In 2013 40% of all online purchases were done via mobile devices. This is huge! Smart phones and tablets are fast over taking PC’s as our primary way of accessing the web. If you need any more evidence; mobile’s share of British E-Commerce rose from 24.0% to 45.0% between Q4 2012 and Q4 2013, according to Capegemini.
Mobile E-commerce sites and tablets are used not only for buying goods, but also for researching the market, comparing prices between other brands and also just as a means of passing the time.
What this means for your business is that now more than ever it’s vital that you insure your site is optimised for any type of handheld mobile device. Smaller businesses in particular have been slow to step up to the mark and provide their customers with opportunities to make purchases on their mobiles. Don’t fall into this trap. Making your E-Commerce site compatible with mobiles may seem like a colossal investment at the time but, it guarantees huge rewards.
Research by IAB UK, showed that 74% of all retailers it polled in its study had a mobile optimised site. Indeed, look up any of the retail industry heavy weights on your phone and you’ll consistently find that they all offer E-Commerce sites tailored to your mobile. Where the retail industry lags behind in terms of its E-Commerce sage, is in areas such as site optimisation for tablets and provision of in-store facilities such as contactless payment and in-store WIFI. There is a lack of willingness amongst retailers to provide their customers with a myriad of E-Commerce options. This is understandable considering consumer tastes and appetites fluctuate regularly, when it comes to the types of options that they want. It requires significant dedication from retailers to stay informed of consumer needs out there in the digital ecosystem.
If you are a business owner who has recently optimised their site for mobile use, you may find you are not experiencing the instant results you had hoped for. Don’t worry. It’s important to avoid the tendency to view your site’s conversion rate success, solely in terms of the amount of sales that are being generated.
What you need to think about in the first instance is getting traffic to your site and engaging visitors with clever content. Once engaged, visitors might follow your social channel; share, tweet or like your product; write a review; subscribe to your newsletter; etc. They might even complete a task like filling in a questionnaire. So its not all about the stacking up of sales volumes. This is the ultimate goal of course, but consider the wider types of engagement consumers can have with your site and what this could mean for sales volumes and brand awareness further down the line.
Design factors affecting mobile E-Commerce conversion rates:
For those of you who have researched the mobile E-Commerce market and have seen for yourselves the huge potential for sales that your business has yet to tap, you probably want to get on with creating your mobile site as quickly as possible. Before you get too ahead of yourself, bear in mind that there are certain techniques which must be implemented in the design process of your mobile site in order to maximise conversion rates.
- Space is of the essence when it comes to mobile sites, take care to ensure that you correctly prioritise the most important menus that are crucial for the browsing and transaction stages of your visitors purchases.
- Like many top retailers you may want to opt for fixed navigation when it comes to menus. Fixed navigation is where menus or toolbars on the site sit in place, always visible to the user whether they scroll up or down.
- Images of products should be displayed from many different angles, showing as much detail as possible and often in the context that they were intended to be used. For example, a pair of football boots could be shown worn by a footballer whilst on a pitch.
- Remember to use colour schemes that don’t blend in and drift under the radar. If you have a call to action on your page, make sure it is coloured and situated prominently. White space gives content room to breathe and declutters the page. It can put the visitor at ease when he or she is making a purchase.
- When choosing copy, avoid long convoluted pieces of text and remember to use wording that instills trust. Phrases such as “ pay securely” are far more motivating and likely to induce the desired sale than phrases such as “Pay now”.
As we have seen E-Commerce sites must be optimised for mobile use, if you are going to take advantage of those extra sales. Designing and creating your vital mobile E-Commerce site is the next paving stone of the road to higher revenue. It requires the correct blend of design, development and marketing. However, steep the Mobile E-Commerce mountain may seem in the beginning the views on the other side are both lucrative and rewarding.