E-Commerce And Handheld Devices

May 30, 2013

It is not an over exaggeration to say that e-commerce is rapidly going on to become “m-commerce”, with mobile devices serving as a major component of traffic to e-commerce websites. With the undeniable role of handheld devices as a shopping channel, it is becoming imperative for owners of shopping websites to optimize their mobile site designs, and monitor end-user statistics round the clock. Mobile commerce sales are expected to increase manifold over the next couple of years, accounting for a whopping 24% of retail e-commerce by 2016.

Needless to say, business owners have an exciting resource to tap in the form of mobile e-commerce, and need to be channelizing a major part of their efforts in this direction. The first step is to ensure that your website is optimized for mobile devices, whether this means creating a new mobile site, or changing the design of your current website into a responsive one. The biggest mistake that one can do is assuming that users shall adapt to their existing e-commerce website on their mobile devices. With all the well-optimized mobile sites to choose from, chances of that are bleak.

The prime focus while treading into the zone of mobile commerce should be to ensure optimal user convenience. You need to understand that users who are shopping on their handheld devices are not simply visiting your website, but are also comparing prices, looking for coupons, reading reviews, and performing a whole lot of parallel functions at the same time. You want to keep your web design as clean and light as possible, to ensure quick loading, easy call-to-actions, and absolute user friendliness. This ease of navigation could give you all the competitive advantage you need from a user’s perspective.

The two options that e-commerce website owners are faced with while trying to enhance mobile user experience are-

  • Creating an altogether new mobile site
  • Adopting responsive web design

The latter option is more feasible, as it makes it possible for companies to have a single website that adapts to whichever device it is being viewed on. While the upfront costs of implementing responsive web design might be higher than those of creating a mobile site, it saves significantly more in the long run. Now that mobile commerce is definitely here to stay and grow with each passing day, it would be prudent of business owners to take necessary steps to make the experience of their mobile users an optimal one.

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