It’s called m-commerce; it combines e-commerce with mobile. It is estimated that a huge majority of Americans own a Smartphone and spend about five hours a day on them. Last year, the number of people accessing the internet via mobile surpassed the number of people doing it from a desktop computer. That is exactly why selling online is shifting from an e-commerce model to an m-commerce model and already it’s revolutionizing the way businesses market to their customers.

M-Commerce is Growing Fast

Over the next two years, m-commerce is predicted to account for nearly half of all e-commerce sales in the U.S. As of the end of 2017, e-commerce sales totaled over $2.2 billion and m-commerce made up a third of those sales. This year alone the number of purchases made online from a mobile device is predicted to grow by close to 10%.

Why is m-commerce growing so rapidly? It’s the conversion rate. Shoppers making purchases online have a 2% conversion rate while mobile users go from searching to purchasing at a 5% conversion rate – more than double the rate for traditional e-commerce.

WAPs (Wireless Application Protocols) make online purchases easier since most Americans have their Smartphones with them at all times and spend so many hours a day on them. There is no need to be stationary in order to make purchases. Consumers can shop from anywhere there is a wireless connection which largely explains the higher conversion rate.

Smartphone Manufacturers are Aiding M-Commerce

Despite the surge in m-commerce, laptops and desktop computers still provide one advantage over mobile – screen size. While consumers are more likely to make a purchase via mobile, they still prefer to see the items they intend to buy on larger screens. Ergo, the majority of m-commerce purchases last year were made via Tablets with larger screens than Smartphones.

Smartphone technology continues to advance and now manufacturers are working to seize on the growing popularity of m-commerce. One way they are doing this is by designing Smartphones that are already enabled with WAP and combine Bluetooth technology to provide a total wireless experience.

Increasing security for mobile applications and speeding up wireless connections are other features that manufacturers are working on in anticipation of m-commerce surpassing e-commerce as the online shopping method of choice for the majority of consumers.

M-Commerce’s Impact on Traditional Retailers

Our recent report detailed the changes happening in traditional retail, which now includes e-commerce. What we found when we spoke to retail experts about m-commerce is that retailers believe that combining m-commerce and e-commerce with an “in-store presence” is the key to harnessing retail growth on all platforms.

In fact, large online retailers found that their mobile platforms were seeing an increase in m-commerce purchases of 30% over the last two years. That’s a 20% increase over the last five years. This is having a huge impact on traditional retailers that are finding new ways to use mobile technology to increase in-store purchases, including:

-Using mobile apps to offer coupons, discounts, and to send alerts for new products when shoppers are near their physical stores

-Utilizing online resources like YouTube, blogs, and social media channels to promote products via mobile devices

-Allowing quick one-click purchases using new mobile pay apps

-And using text and e-mail on mobile to send promo codes to highlight good deals

The attraction for consumers is convenience, speed, and a personalized in-person shopping experience. As m-commerce continues to grow, expect more traditional retailers to try to imitate the online experience that consumers have grown accustomed to in their physical stores.


Written by Nicole Brzyski for Coldwell Banker Commercial Affiliates

A Trusted Guide in Commercial Real Estate

Coldwell Banker Commercial® provides Commercial Real Estate Services from Property Sales and Leases, to Property Management. Learn how our expansive network of Independently Owned and Operated Affiliates and Real Estate Professionals use their in-depth knowledge of the local market and industry trends to help businesses and investors navigate the complexities of the commercial real estate landscape.