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M-commerce now accounts for a fifth of online sales

07 June 2013 - 10:36 by Graham Miller

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In the first three months of the year, people used mobile devices for safe shopping online in such large numbers that just over 20 per cent of all web-based sales originated from portable gadgets.

This is according to new figures published this week by IMRG, with analysts pointing out that this represents a significant leap for m-commerce usage when compared to the final quarter of 2012, during which it accounted for 15.4 per cent of the UK's total online sales.

Experts believe that m-commerce has had such a good start in 2013 because more people purchased tablets over the Christmas period last year than ever before.

Retailers offering safe shopping online apparently experienced a rise in the number of people browsing their sites from mobile devices this year, with 30 per cent of visitors originating from this platform.

Back in 2010, fewer than half a per cent of online sales came from mobiles, so it is significant to see just how much this market has grown in the past three years.

IMRG spokesperson, Tina Spooner, pointed out that the 5,000 per cent increase in m-commerce sales has been a real wakeup call for retailers, with a fifth of the entire online shopping market now being accounted for by purchases made from smartphones and tablets.

There is no suggestion that m-commerce expansion will slow down over the rest of the year, so the companies which want to benefit from strong sales in this sector will need to act quickly.

Capgemini spokesperson, Chris Webster, suggests that future analysts might even refer to this as the mobile decade, since it is predicted that the influence of portable devices will only continue to grow.

While desktop e-commerce is still important, it will be interesting to see whether m-commerce eclipses it.