How Often Do People Purchase On Smartphones And Tablets?

The way people make purchasing decisions has changed a lot in the last few years and is continuing to do so. In May, Forrester’s US Mobile Phone and Tablet Commerce forecast was released. It stated:

Mobile and Tablet Purchasing

“US mobile phone and tablet commerce will top $293 billion by 2018 (tablet = $219B; smartphone = $74B) — a whopping 54% of total US eCommerce sales. By the end of this year, combined mobile and tablet sales will reach $114 billion, with the biggest purchase categories including media products, apparel, and consumer electronics”

Forrester’s predictions outline the incredible growth rate that mobiles and tablets are seeing in the US. We are also seeing this trend in Britain. Recently we conducted a survey through YouGov, into a British audience. The respondents were asked to answer in the context of physical goods and not digital purchases (i.e., music, films, software). We found that:

  • 18% of all respondents have purchased online via a smartphone or tablet in the last week.
  • 27% of 25-34 year olds surveyed have purchased on a smartphone or a tablet in the last week.

These numbers would be undoubtedly higher if they included digital purchases. The survey further revealed that users of some social media websites are more inclined to make purchases online. When excluding the 55 and overs, 22% use Facebook, Google+,Twitter or LinkedIn (or combination) once a month or more often made a purchase in the last week via a smartphone or tablet.

What does this all mean?

As Forrester predicts growth and our survey results supports this, now is the time to capitalize on savvy consumers, who are purchasing on smartphones and tablets. With 27% of 25-34 year olds surveyed having purchased on smartphone or tablet in the last week, it is essential that retail businesses optimize their site for mobile. People who are using certain social media websites are more likely to purchase on a smart device, and therefore online retailers should consider targeting people who are on social platforms in the 25-34 age bracket. To learn more, download the full report, which includes 8 actionable consumer insights.