Note: This post has been guest authored by Anna Steve, who is a community manager at Best VPN. She has a passion for web design and user experience and when not working enjoys playing rugby, swimming and gym work.
Mobile commerce, also known as m-commerce, is the process of making an online transaction with a wireless device such as a tablet or smartphone. A form of e-commerce, mobile commerce first occurred through devices like cell phones and digital assistant devices, while the advancement of smartphone technology has further stimulated the mobile commerce market.
Mobile commerce is more than just buying and selling goods or services online through a mobile device. There are several types of transactions that fall under the mobile commerce umbrella, many of which you’ve likely done yourself.
Perhaps the most recognizable type of mobile commerce, online shopping is something that most people do, highlighting just how big m-commerce has become in recent years. A huge percentage of smartphone owners shop online using their device at least once, being one of the main reasons that m-commerce has grown as such an exponential rate.
For instance, did you know that according to research from UK Signal Boosters, 62% of all smartphone users have bought something online using their phone in the last six months? As the mobile commerce market continues to grow over the coming months, expect that figure to also rise.
Retail businesses are fully aware of this ongoing trend too. E-commerce stores are being developed to accommodate mobile commerce habits, with mobile-friendly and highly responsive websites ensuring that mobile users can shop online with greater ease.
The popularity of commerce is due to various factors, with one of the more notable examples being the convenience it offers people. Mobile banking is a relatively new innovation in m-commerce but one that offers the upmost convenience for managing personal finances.
Rather than heading to a bank, people can use their mobile device to complete a variety of banking transactions. Mobile banking is quick and easy, whether using it to pay bills, transfer money between accounts, or simply managing personal finances.
Another way in that mobile baking is more convenient is the fact it’s available 24/7. It doesn’t matter when a bank opens or closes when mobile banking, there is no need to wait in long queues, and you don’t even need to interact with a bank teller.
The only setback with mobile banking is that you can’t use it to deposit cash into the account, but other than that it is incredibly useful and convenient for most people.
Despite being one of the latest innovations of mobile commerce, mobile payments are set to be the driving force behind its future growth. Mobile payments are basically a digital transaction involving the use of a mobile device. Instead of using a credit card or cash, a mobile device is used to pay for goods or services.
The increasing use of mobile payments is linked to improvements in mobile technology. With mobile payment services from PayPal, Google, Android, and Apple all available, smartphone owners have more mobile payment options than ever before – and more are likely to come.
Mobile payments are very much are the forefront of the future of mobile commerce. They offer a quick and convenient way to purchase goods at a pay point in virtually any physical store, leading many business owners to integrate mobile payment systems into their pay points.
It has even been suggested that mobile payments could end up replacing credit cards in the future. Instead of needing to carry many different credit cards you could lose or have stolen, a digital wallet is used from a mobile device to pay for things.
It is not an exaggeration to suggest that the future of mobile commerce is massive. As the number of people using mobile devices continues to grow, so too does the future of mobile commerce. Here are some facts that highlight just how bright future m-commerce has:
The Number of Mobile Users is Constantly Increasing
Mobile ownership has never been higher – and it’s not going to slow down any time soon. With more mobile devices in circulation than ever, mobile commerce is naturally going to expand as more people have access to it.
For instance, by the end of 2018, it was estimated that that 2 billion people own a smartphone. That’s only going to increase too, with an expected rise of 25% each year for smartphone owners. More people using smartphones means more people using mobile commerce!
Mobile Browsing is More Popular Than Desktop Browsing
If you’ve ever browsed the internet on your phone then you know just how quick and easy it is. There’s no waiting for a computer to turn on, programs to start up, and web browsers to load. Simply hit a few buttons on your phone and you’re browsing online.
Therefore, it’s little surprise that the majority of smartphone users prefer using their smartphone for browsing the internet. For example, the average time a smartphone user spends browsing online on their mobile device is 87 hours a month – the average time spent browsing on a desktop computer is less than half of that at 34 hours per month.
M-Commerce Sales are Growing
Did you know that over one-third of all e-commerce sales occur through mobile devices? A staggering 34% of e-commerce transactions are done via mobile commerce, while it’s likely to become even more popular.
For instance, by 2021 it is estimated that more than half (54%) of all e-commerce sales are going to happen on mobile devices! That means billions of dollars of online transactions occurring through mobile commerce alone.
M-Commerce is Changing How We Shop
When was the last time you bought something in a shop without checking your phone first? Whether looking for reviews, price comparisons, or product information, mobile devices are influencing our shopping habits in a profound manner.
For example, 80% of all shoppers use their mobile device for extra information when shopping in a physical store. Around one-third of all buying decisions are now influenced by mobile devices, highlighting the prominent role that mobile commerce plays now and in the future.