As the year draws to its conclusion the digital world has seen many transformations in 2013 with possibly none so great as the impact of the tablet and mobile browsing now becoming the preferred choice of the connecting with the web.
This year the world has seen shipment of tablets exceed that of the PC and it was also the year in which the smartphone dominated the US market by taking 64% of the market share (Nielson)
Statistics show that in the UK more than 52% of women own a tablet, an increase of 9% from 2012, and further more 26% of 18 to 34 year olds now own a touchscreen device of some sort, a statistic that tells us this is a trend that’s only going to grow in the coming years. [Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-23355944]
So it may come as some surprise that that many of the UK’s leading brands are playing catch up when it comes to optimizing their site! A recent study by Venda showed that just one of the UK’s top visited retail sites (Curry’s) currently hosts a responsive site.
25% of website across the net don’t have their site optimized, with many hosting their retail sites under a different URL potentially having a detrimental effect on both their analytics and SEO campaigns.
Another study showed that a third of all page views come from people either using a smartphone or tablet device. So surely any retailer would jump at the chance of optimizing their site, therefore increasing the end users experience leading to a greater conversion rate and subsequently increased sales.
So the question remains, why has it taken British retailers so long to embrace the trend that we’ve known has been on its way for many a year?
Well in my mind it comes down to complacency and the fact that in a difficult market place for many retailers it’s come down to survival, with innovation taking a back seat. But this could also account for many a high street stalwart disappearing altogether.
Viewing through a mobile is often the first step in a customer’s decision-making process, so it’s imperative that you don’t leave your customers with a bitter taste in their mouth, a bad browsing experience is often attributed to losing that sale at the earliest stage of the buying process something I’m sure no company can afford to do.
So with Christmas just around the corner this seems like the perfect opportunity for British retailers to give the consumer the perfect excuse to part with his or her money, but firstly they just need to give them an excuse to do that.