Mobile website commerce has taken the retail world by storm. A new study conducted by PayPal in collaboration with Ipsos indicates that mobile commerce has grown almost three times faster than eCommerce. The multicounty annual growth rate for mobile commerce is estimated at 42% vs. 13% for eCommerce overall from between 2013 to 2016. The research examined shopping habits of over 17,500 shoppers in different countries.
The explosive growth of mobile website commerce has left many retailers and brands wondering how to make the most of this market. Here are a few tips you can use to improve your mobile website commerce.
#1. Simplify Your Layout
A majority of your customers are most likely visiting your website and viewing it on a screen that takes up just a few inches in width. So what happens when visitors have to work extra hard to navigate your site on a small screen? They leave. Responsive design can help optimize your website to become more appropriate for smaller screens. This will also offer faster load times as well as simpler navigation. Although responsive design is sometimes regarded as a “one-size-fits-all-screen” solution, it alone is not the best way to serve a website for mobile shoppers.
70% of mobile shoppers tend to scan the whole homepage to get an overview of the site before they proceed with their purchase, according to a research conducted by Baymard Institute. The research also showed that users prefer a homepage that is easily scanned and does not have too many visual elements. They also prefer a homepage that shows the first layer of categories so that users can start scanning the list immediately upon landing on the homepage.
In addition to these insights, consider the most common ways a user will use your mobile web site. Are they searching for a customer service phone number? Are they looking for the nearest brick-and-mortar store? Are they checking prices while in the aisle? Design the site around the important functions your users are performing.
#2. Allow for Mobile Payments
Mobile payments systems are one of the advancements associated with the fast-growing mobile commerce. The mobile payments sector offers online retailers a great opportunity to further accelerate their business development. Sadly, mobile payments are still a challenge for most merchants. Although consumers have concerns about the security of their purchasing information, many are turning to mobile payment options for speed and convenience. According to Forbes, Americans are twice likely to carry a mobile phone as cash, and those under the age 35 are four times more likely.
Google Wallet, Apple Pay, Square and PayPal are some of the more popular mobile payment options to be utilized.
Ensuring customers that your business is secure is just as vital as the convenience the mobile payments offer. Use SSL to keep sensitive information sent across the internet encrypted so that only the intended recipient can access it. Some payment options, like Apple Pay, have tried to make it more difficult to commit credit card fraud. Make sure you consider the security of any payment option you choose to integrate.
#3. Test on Multiple Devices
With the proliferation of smartphones and tablets today, testing the mobile version of your eCommerce website is no longer an optional strategy. Today, if you are not mobile-friendly, you are not customer friendly. And it is no longer just a question of PC vs. mobile phone screens. There are many screen sizes and your website has to address your customer’s screen real estate on the device they are using. Additionally, make sure you are testing across several browsers.
Keep in mind that while you may not have changed your website, phone manufacturers are releasing new models and new operating systems that may affect how your site is displayed.
#4. Simplify Your Checkout Process
While about 50% of smartphone users rely on their phones to research products, only 20% use their mobile devices to make purchases. And even though each new release of smartphone hardware seems to be bigger and bigger, they are still nowhere near the size of screens most of us have become comfortable with when using our laptops and desktops. Because of this, you need to be careful to use the space wisely for your checkout process.
It is becoming increasingly important for companies to create a seamless, user-friendly checkout process on their mobile website that will encourage online shoppers to complete purchases on their smartphones. To do this you will want to keep your mobile checkout process shorter. It is important to reduce the fields to the essentials. In other words, condense the whole process into a single cohesive page.
Don’t forget to offer the option for guest checkouts. Offering the opportunity for guest checkout is very critical. If the user has to go through the process of signing up for a new account, he or she may not complete the order.
Beyond streamlining the process, try to speed up the checkout process. Using autocomplete on forms can help reduce time to order and the next time a shopper uses a form in your mobile commerce site or app, let them choose if they want to automatically fill out the form information, such as their phone numbers, email addresses, etc.
#5. Analytics Are Important
Monitoring and analyzing traffic on your mobile website is crucial. Google analytics is free and a great tool so you can see information about who is visiting your mobile website, how are they getting to your website, and what they are looking for. Knowing where your visitors are coming from and what they want from your site is very important, especially if you are targeting a specific audience.
The desktop browser is not going away anytime soon, but online retailers need to focus more on a mobile-centric world. After all, companies that want to boost traffic, increase sales and grow in today’s mobile-driven world need a mobile presence. Implementing these tips can help give you a big bump in both traffic and conversions.
Images: ”business and modern lifestyle concept: young woman shopping online at the park /Shutterstock.com“
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