Mobile device use up with retailers

Traffic from mobile devices accounted for 18.3 percent of overall Web traffic on Christmas Day, per a study by IBM Coremetrics.

The IBM study is proof that consumers are using their mobile devices to shop. The study also compared how Christmas mobile shopping compared to previous years.

“For the really smart retailers, the holiday season paid out with the rise of mobile consumers,” said John Squire, chief strategy officer of IBM Smarter Commerce, Armonk, NY.

Holiday spike
The IBM study looked at mobile usage over two days – Dec. 25 and Dec. 26.

On Dec. 25, 14.4 percent of all sales that IBM observed were made via a mobile device, which is up from 5.3 percent in 2010 –  a 172.9 percent increase.

Mobile traffic in general increased by 117.8 percent year-to-year on Christmas Day.

Of all Web traffic, iPads claimed seven percent of device share, iPhone devices totaled 6.4 percent and Android accounted for five percent of usage.

As a group, online sales grew 16.4 percent year-over-year on Christmas Day.

In addition to Christmas Day, consumers also spent more time and money via mobile the day after Christmas.

Online sales increased 27.8 percent year-to-year for Dec. 26.

Mobile traffic made up 16.4 percent of Web visits the day after Christmas, which is up 109.3 percent from 2010.

Sales from a mobile device accounted for 11.3 percent of all Web sales the day after Christmas, compared to 4.3 percent in 2010.

Mobile shift
IBM’s findings is only the latest piece of data showing that consumers are increasingly using mobile to shop.

Earlier this holiday season, San Francisco-based research firm released a study that found that online retail dollars that can be attributed to mobile increased from 1.87 percent in April to 3.74 percent in December (see story).

Going forward, 2012 is expected to be a year of innovation for mobile commerce.

“We expect mobile to increase – there are more mobile devices now and retailers can be expected to build out the mobile shopping experience,” said David Selinger, CEO of RichRelevance, San Francisco.

Mr. Selinger also said that retailers can expect to see more use of interactive mobile initiatives, including check-ins, deals and games in 2012.

Additionally, eMarketer predicts that mobile commerce will total $11.6 billion in 2012, which is up from 2011’s projected $6.7 billion.

“Mobile has been growing since January, and our expectation is that we will see more overall online engagement coming in through mobile devices in the next year,” Mr. Squire said.

“There are big implications for retailers to think about the best ways to promote their products and their overall experience online for smart consumers who are using smartphones and tablets,” he said.

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