Shop on the Hop: Mobile Commerce To Boom in 2013


Consumer confidence in mobile shopping is at an all-time high, with the majority of shoppers planning to buy Christmas gifts on their phones - 73% of whom have not done so before. Is this global phenomenon here to stay and what are the opportunities for forward-thinking advertisers?

As well as consumer trust in mobile shopping growing, around one in three customers are planning on spending over half of their festive budget via mobile, avoiding the traditional Christmas crush in favour of shopping on their own terms.

In the UK (as of November 2012), smartphones account for 83% of the market. Conclusion: we cannot disregard the impact mobile is having on consumer spending trends. Retailers who do not have a mobile site really need to launch one. Now.

In the year ahead, we predict more problems with platform rivalries (such as the iOS6 maps debacle) that could lead to the re-emergence of walled gardens. Companies will secure their share of consumers’ time, but those same consumers will have their overall mobile accessibility disrupted. Brands need to be aware of a backlash.

Convenience will continue to be king in 2013. We already know it’s a key benefit for consumers, and last-minute shoppers are more likely to use mobile. The next step is a larger ‘screen shopping’ experience, complemented by the role of QR Codes to further blur the lines between online and high-street shopping.

Emerging markets will bring new mobile products offering even more convenient solutions.

Just as banking and micro-financing entered the mobile market, we believe mobile healthcare will grow by solving the problem of accessibility. We expect to see a new consumer experience including:

  • Remote patient monitoring
  • Remote nursing
  • Medical records
  • Access to healthcare information.

Healthcare service providers (such as insurance companies) would do well to tailor their content strategies to suit.

As in any developing market, promotional opportunities develop alongside reputational risks. For mobile, consumer empowerment via blogs, photos and videos will increase. Companies need to recognise this for both online and offline brands, and consider the possible implications when planning and implementing their marketing strategies.

Marketers must put strategy before tactics in order to deliver real ROI. The solution: a ‘mobile first’ approach enabling brands to create mobile campaigns that engage their target audiences more effectively.