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Mobile Stats Your Store Should Know

Posted by Dean Asher on 4/21/16 12:00 AM
Topics: eCommerce, omnichannel

Improving sales is something that's important for every store, and eCommerce is one of many great ways to make that happen. Unfortunately, it can seem like a daunting aspect of the industry that's difficult to fully understand and utilize in college retail.

Thankfully, Tammy Everts at SOASTA recently compiled and shared 22 mobile stats everyone should know. We've included some of the most relevant stats and infographics to college stores, but be sure to check out her post for the full details.

2020 ecommerce traffic, by device type

Everyone is a mobile user

This set of numbers is intended to put to rest any idea that there’s a specific primary demographic group for mobile. Almost everyone is online, and almost everyone uses mobile.

1. 92% of US adults own a cellphone. [Pew Research]

2. Contrary to rumours, tablets are not dying. There are 166.7 million tablet users today. By 2020, that number is expected to grow to 185 million. [eMarketer]

3. Today, there are about 7.3 billion mobile subscribers worldwide. By 2021, that number is expected to hit 9.1 billion. (I’ll do the math for you: that’s 25% growth in six years.) [Ericsson]

4. Millennials are now the largest generation in the US, in terms of population. 81% of them primarily use mobile to shop. [BI Intelligence]

What do people want from their mobile experiences?

6. The number one concern people have about any online experience is security: 30% worry about how secure transactions are. But performance issues — slow load times (27%) and page crashes (25%) — rank second and third. [Harris/SOASTA]

7. 90% of US adults who’ve used mobile to access customer support have had poor experiences.[Software Advice]

8. In a neuroscientific study, the level of stress caused by mobile delays was comparable to watching a horror movie, and was significantly more stressful than waiting in line at a bricks-and-mortar store. [Ericsson]

How much are people spending via mobile?

9. In 2015, mobile commerce accounted for $115 billion worldwide. At the end of this year, that number is projected to reach $142 billion. That’s 23% growth in just one year — a considerably uptick from the 15% year-over-year growth we’ve experienced in the past. [Forrester]

10. Mobile commerce accounts for 11% of overall ecommerce. But don’t let that number trick you into devaluing the importance of mobile in making online transactions. Roughly one-third of retail traffic comes from mobile devices. Mobile is an integral part of the purchasing experience, even if the final transaction doesn’t take place on a smartphone or tablet. [Forrester]

11. Further to the point above, 40% of purchases travel across devices, driven by mobile and apps. This comes from a study of 1.4 billion online transactions. [Criteo]

12. Between 2014 and 2015, traffic from mobile devices increased from 40% to 75% of total retail traffic. This was one of the findings of a study we did at SOASTA, where we compared the performance of twelve IR200 retailers from year to year.

READ: Back-to-school ecommerce report card: Retailers’ performance “sweet spot” now 2 seconds for both mobile and desktop

13. By 2020, smartphones and tablets are expected to account for 48% — almost half — of ecommerce sales. [Forrester]


These are a lot of numbers to digest. While numbers are fascinating, what’s more important are the conclusions we can draw from them. Here are my seven big takeaways from all this:

  1. Everyone is a mobile user
  2. Mobile drives ecommerce
  3. Faster pages are the holy grail of mobile UX
  4. Page bloat is insidious
  5. In the battle against page bloat, images are the low-hanging fruit
  6. Don’t count on faster networks to mitigate page bloat
  7. Even small changes can make a big difference


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