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M-commerce usage surges this Christmas

29 December 2011 - 10:33 by Graham Miller

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The sales which spring to life almost as soon as the last present has been unwrapped on Christmas Day have thrown up all sorts of statistics indicating how UK consumers are turning to safe shopping online to get their late December retail fix.

Now it looks like m-commerce is the real area of growth at the tail end of 2011, as various outlets are reporting strong sales made to people who are using their smartphones and tablet devices in order to make their purchases.

John Lewis was one of the beneficiaries of this growth since the revenue from its clearance sale grew by 119 per cent compared to last year's equivalent, with 46 per cent more cash spent via smartphone owners conducting safe shopping online.

John Lewis spokesperson, Jonathan Brown, said that everyone at the company was actually surprised by the dramatic increase in m-commerce interest which has been generated following Christmas 2011.

A total of 2.9 million people visited the John Lewis online outlet on Boxing Day this year and almost 400,000 of these visitors were browsing from their smartphone.

It is estimated that 15 per cent of all e-commerce shopping which was carried out during the run up to the festive period this year was done from a mobile device and this can only increase. Apple estimates that up to five million new iPad owners turned on their gadget for the first time after December 25th 2011, so tablet-based browsing is sure to grow as a result.

eBay is another company that has seen a growth in m-commerce activities, which it estimates to have increased by 150 per cent in the past 12 months, to account for £3.2 billion of its Christmas sales.

Almost every major online retailer and high street chain, including big players like Amazon, has seen a similar m-commerce surge in the UK this year.