Mobile Online Shopping Growing by Leaps and Bounds
Online shopping isn’t a new phenomenon—the history of e-commerce spans back to 1991 when the Internet was finally opened to public use. Since then, online shopping has become a commonplace thing where even individuals who grew up without the Internet and computers can do it! Plus, with the widespread access to mobile devices and Wi-Fi, online shopping has become the norm in the past decade.
However, 2019 has been a pivotal year for e-commerce and is proof of its steady growth. According to Digital Commerce 360, e-commerce sales in the United States grew by 14 percent in 2019 with online consumers spending at least $601 billion. For comparison, in the 1990s e-commerce made up only 5 percent of American spending, and e-commerce’s current success is only a testament to the American’s adoption of online shopping. In addition to this sign of growth, for the first time in history, e-commerce spending has superseded merchandise retail. Furthermore, Amazon accounted for more than one-third of e-commerce purchases made in 2019.
Why Online Shopping Is On the Rise
So how has online shopping been able to grow in such a short period of time? What are the factors that led to its growth? We believe these three factors were critical in pushing online shopping to the mainstream activities of our daily lives:
1. Adoption of the Mobile Device
While the first mobile device able to access the Internet was a Nokia from 1996, in 2019 mobile devices have accounted for over 40% of the sales made via online shopping. Given how easy it is to carry your mobile device on the go, whether you’re commuting or taking a break at work, it’s no surprise that it’s become easier to online shop no matter where you are. According to the Pew Research Center for Internet and Technology, 96% of Americans own a smartphone. Besides the estimation of the rise of smartphone ownership, currently, one in five Americans only use their smartphones for online access.
2. More Trust in E-commerce
As technology improves, so does cybersecurity and other measures to protect sensitive consumer information such as contact information and payment details. We believe the rise of e-commerce also comes with the rise of consumer trust with the security of online shopping sites. In 2020, at least 69 percent of Americans have used an online shopping site while one-quarter of Americans use online shopping on a monthly basis. It’s safe to say that we’ll be seeing more online shoppers in the future as more and more people have access to the Internet and websites strengthen their security systems to protect customers.
3. E-commerce Conveniences
There is a multitude of conveniences provided by e-commerce. From the wide array of discounts and savings, online shoppers can benefit from price cuts, impromptu sales, and free shipping. Furthermore, online shoppers can easily compare prices from the comfort of their own couch while browsing for a specific product online. Rather than wasting time driving from one mall to another, it’s more streamlined to do it all in one sitting. One additional perk is that you can browse through websites any time of the day, whether it’s during the early morning or after work. You no longer have to sacrifice a weekend or a weekday evening to go shopping or run errands around town.
Another factor that makes e-commerce convenient is the huge selection consumers get to choose from. Instead of being limited to local stores, the consumer has more choices to sift through. Particularly for consumers with special needs, the accessibility of online shopping is a great boon so that even those with disabilities can receive the products they desire or need.
What Can I Do with This Data?
Data is important for any industry and business, but it’s essential to know what to do with the data. Not using collected data is the same as not even bothering to find it in the first place. With the current knowledge we have about mobile online shopping trends, what are the moves that all businesses should take to gain the most advantages?
1. Shift to Mobile
Nowadays, most businesses have not only a website but also online listings on different platforms such as Google Business or social media. However, one important platform every business should consider is the mobile website. Compared to your typical website, the format of a mobile website is built specifically for a pleasant user experience on a smartphone. A good mobile website allows a mobile device user to access all parts of the website without needing to zoom in and out on pages, and its layout fits the vertical rectangular shape of a phone.
2. Prepare SEO Strategies for Mobile Users
When setting up a mobile website for your customers, there are several SEO strategies you can incorporate. Remember when it comes to SEO strategies that a straightforward user-oriented experience is what you want to aim for. Here is a quick list of some of the best SEO strategies to employ:
- Aim to make your website ‘thumb-friendly’
- Include a streamlined navigation bar at the top of your page
- Consider how large font may look, especially on smaller devices
- Adjust for local SEO strategies as more and more searches are geared towards finding services and businesses “near me”
- Think over whether or not a pop-up is necessary for your website as they may hamper a mobile user’s experience
- Streamline all written content and call-to-actions for user convenience
When preparing for your mobile website, it’s also a good time to take another look at your business’s desktop website and to see which areas need editing.
3. Jumpstart Your Online Presence
If you haven’t yet, we suggest jumpstarting your online platform today whether it’s creating a website, linking your business’s details to Google Business, or beginning a social media channel. Especially the estimation that the world will have 7.5 million Internet users by 2030, it’s more important than ever to have an online base representing your business and its services.
Even if you’re not tech-savvy, and don’t have the funds to start a mobile site or online store for your business, you can always use a social media platform such as Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. At the very least, those social media platforms have an interface built for mobile devices.
The Future of E-commerce
There’s no denying that online shopping and spending has transformed the retail industry, and will continue to do so in the future. As the world makes more technological advances and consumers become more confident in online shopping, all businesses need to work and develop a stronger Internet presence as we enter an age of digital retail environments. Depending on the type of business, this may mean your store is completely replaced by an online version or your current operations will include 365-day, 24-hour support for customers.
Are you currently a business owner deliberating on how to shift your business’s online presence to mobile devices? Do you want to improve your business’s online platforms but simply don’t know where to start? Simply drop us an email below to see how Epidemic Marketing can help!