Continuing our exploration of the State of Retail in Q1 2013, let’s get right back to the metrics! Be sure to read Part I for a bird’s-eye-view of the situation.
Multi-Platform Online Retail
Tablets! You hear about them everywhere. Tablet ownership has now surpassed 60M people, just under half the 130M who own smartphones. Not a fad anymore! The sheer volume of devices, and the jump in devices-per-person, has had some interesting results:
• Comparing February 2013 with February 2010, total U.S. internet usage has jumped from 63B minutes to 308B minutes for smartphone users.
• This growth was mirrored, albeit to a lesser extent, in desktop users, jumping from 388B minutes to 467B minutes.
• Tablet usage is a new category altogether, accounting for 115B minutes in 2013.
• Altogether, usage nearly doubled from 451B to 890B minutes. Wow!
Commerce-wise, this rapid growth shows up strongly in engagement with U.S. coupon sites, where minute usage ballooned 530% in that same period, from 782M minutes to 4.93B minutes.
In a jaw-dropping development, nearly half of all digital time spent on retail properties now occurs via smartphone/tablet! How long will it be until desktops’ slim 52% lead gives way? And what do these retailers’ efforts look like to garner such engagement? Let’s take a look:
• The average Top 50 retailer extends its desktop audience by 45% via mobile channels.
• Amazon in particular has some astounding figures; its Unique Visitors in March 2013 nearly doubled (from ~85M to 164M) via mobile engagement.
• eBay enjoyed 20.68M mobile-only users in that same period.
eBay makes sure to capitalize on this constituency via multiple mobile-friendly endeavors, including:
• Ease of payment
• Barcode scanning
• Well-integrated platforms
• Mobile app real estate
Where does multi-platform commerce matter most? Daily deal sites and drugstores, of course! Groupon, LivingSocial, Walgreens, and CVS all posted amazing figures for the share of users’ time spent on mobile devices. A full 72% of Groupon’s users’ time originated from mobile. Wild!
It goes deeper! Consider this: at $5.9B in Q1 2013, mobile commerce (m-commerce?) accounted for 11% of all U.S. retail e-commerce (this figure was actually reached in Q4 2012 and sustained into the new year). Let’s now compare retail spending growth by channel:
• Total retail discretionary spending growth increased a measly 1% year-over-year.
• The e-commerce segment grew a healthy 13%.
• Just mobile blows them both out of the water with 31% growth.
Turns out that tablets encourage spending more than smartphones, with 37% buyer penetration compared to 20% for smartphones. But smartphone users retaliated in Q1 2013 by spending an average of $139 per buyer, compared to just $91 per buyer for tablet users.
We can zoom in even further by parsing product categories. Apparel/accessories, home/garden, computers/hardware, and furniture/appliances/equipment all line up pretty close to the total digital commerce mobile share of spending at 5 to 7%. Event tickets, however, consistently see a much higher percentage of buying occur via mobile—around 15%.
And that’s it for this edition! Tune in next time for a Q2 2013 sneak peek at new development, growing trends, and blossoming technologies.