(The Hosting News) – Hostway today warned that retailers risk losing millions of pounds from missed sales this Christmas if their IT infrastructure fails to cater for the sharp increases in traffic from mobile users. The UK is predicted to spend £6.4bn online this Christmas as consumers continue to seek better deals than in-store. Furthermore, mobile shopping is set to significantly increase online sales this year, as 18% of consumers plan to purchase some gifts using their smartphones.
“Many online retailers have prepared for the extra traffic their sites receive during the pre-Christmas rush. However, with more customers shopping on their mobile phones, retailers now need to ensure they can cope with a surge in demand from this channel otherwise they risk losing a significant number of sales. Having the right IT infrastructure in place to deal with the rise in mobile commerce and to support the growing number of mobile shopping applications is an absolute must,” said Neil Barton, director, Hostway.
Research carried out by TNS earlier this year found that 82% of consumers admitted if a retailers’ website performed badly it would dissuade them from buying goods from that organisation on the web or even in store. This demonstrates the importance of having a good online reputation and the need for retailers to ensure their online customer experience is a positive one.
“In the same way customers have determined which brands they are loyal to on the traditional web, we are likely to see the same in the mobile space as more people shop using their phone. Today’s mobile sites and applications are also becoming much more multimedia heavy, therefore it is vital that retailers have sufficient supporting IT infrastructure and invest in solutions such as traffic management and content caching, which can help enhance the mobile experience. The challenge for retailers this Christmas is to learn from their mistakes in the traditional web world and ensure their mobile services and applications have the right mix of technology to support them. Those retailers that do are likely to have a much merrier Christmas and prosperous new year than those that don’t.”