Monday, 20 may 2019 | Redacción CEU
They fit in the palm of our hands, accompany us everywhere and enable us to be always connected. Definitely, mobile phones are transforming our lives. We attend meetings by video call, use apps to improve our language skills, manage our finances through online banking and stay in touch with our family and friends via instant messaging. The more we change our behavior patterns, the safer we feel with the use of these devices. In some way, we are losing our fear and increasingly relying on them to perform different tasks such as, for example, buying.
E-commerce has revolutionized the way we sell and buy. Stores do not need to be big or move to another country to sell in foreign markets. Customers no longer have to go to stores to buy, they can access millions of products with just a click. In fact, with the development of mobile commerce, e-commerce has managed to go one step further: customers apart from buying at any time, can also do it anywhere. In other words, smartphones have become mobile shopping malls that never close their doors.
Mobile commerce in figures
According to eMarketer, one third of online purchases will be made through mobile phones in 2019 in the United States. If its prediction is right, m-commerce will reach the figure of 203.940 million dollars this year. Although this is a significant growth, desktop purchases would still exceed the ones on mobile devices. However, it should be noted that while conventional e-commerce is growing at an annual rate of 5% in this country, m-commerce grew by 43.7%. last year. The calculations made by eMarketer suggest that in 2019 mobile commerce will grow by 37.7%.
It is not the only report that points out this trend. The Annual E-commerce Study of IAB Spain of 2018 also mentions the growth of m-commerce compared with e-commerce (in this case, in Spain). Although computers still appear in this report as the main online purchase devices (87% of claim making online purchases through it), they lose eight points compared to the previous edition. These points are the ones that cell phones have won in 2018 (45% of users use them in their online purchases). The IAB Spain report also lists the main barriers to purchases via smartphones. Most users agree on convenience as the main factor behind their decision to rule out mobile shopping. They consider more practical to make purchases through computers than through smartphones. They also indicate other obstacles such as the size of the screen and security.
There is a need to work on the optimization and development of mobile commerce. This is the reason why it is not the main online shopping alternative. However, as the figures support, users increasingly rely on mobile phones and the new features they offer. For example, they use smartphones’ apps to make transfers, something completely unthinkable just a few years ago. On the other hand, the relationship between users and cell phones is increasingly close (sometimes it even becomes an addiction), and the use of smartphones has extended to a larger proportion of the population (the age gap has been reduced).