The world has gone mobile. PC sales have dipped, and phone and tablet sales continue to rise. People expect to be able to access the online sources they want wherever they happen to be. Therefore, making sure your ecommerce online presence is compatible with mobile devices is crucial for your success.
According to a report by ShopVisible, mobile devices accounted for 30 percent of ecommerce website traffic in 2013 (15% for mobile phones and 15% for tablets). That percentage will likely grow in 2014 and continue to grow for some time. Moreover, a report from Custora says that mobile e-commerce revenue will reach $50 billion in 2014.
Now, imagine you have a website that ignores mobile devices, presenting the exact same interface it presents to desktops and laptops. If mobile users find your site difficult to use on smaller screens, they might just bypass it for another store. That is revenue you lose.
There are a few options to make your ecommerce site mobile friendly:
- An App – The advantage of a mobile app is that it provides a crisp, fast, native interface for mobile devices, and people simply love apps. The disadvantage is that you will have to develop or pay someone to develop the app. You will also have to make more than one version for each mobile OS and keep them updated and secure.
- Mobile redirect – Many sites detect mobile browsers and redirect users to special mobile versions of their sites. They might also provide links to them from their main pages. The advantage is one page for all mobile devices, no custom apps. The disadvantage is that those detections do not always work and take away some choice from people who might have large tablets and who actually want to see the desktop versions.
Mobile devices will continue to play a big role in ecommerce for the foreseeable future. It is imperative that you not ignore this slice of your customer population. You owe it to them and your wallet to meet their needs.