Online retail sales on the start of the holiday season rose to almost $3 billion this year thanks to smartphones.
This Thanksgiving, mobile commerce use became an even bigger driver of online sales than had been the case in previous years. With a one day sales total of $2.9 billion this year, smartphones are getting a pat on the back for sending shoppers to online stores even when brick and mortar ones were closed.
This year, smartphones and tablets comprised an estimated 41 percent of all Thanksgiving online revenue.
The total online retail sales this year saw a very healthy growth rate of about 18 percent over Thanksgiving 2016. This was credited to the growing mobile commerce use in combination with a rising number of companies who were launching their Black Friday deals early. Savvy shoppers were more than willing to head online to take advantage of the savings through the use of their mobile devices.
Smartphones made up 46 percent of all visits to e-commerce websites and apps regardless of whether or not a purchase was made. That said, phones also comprised 29 percent of the sales made online on Thanksgiving, said Adobe Analytics figures. That firm monitors about 80 percent of the transactions occurring across the leading 100 American web retailers.
Thanksgiving 2016 saw 27 percent of online retail revenue brought in from mobile commerce use.
Mobile commerce specifically by way of smartphones is growing at a solid rate as it gradually takes hold of a larger share of the online shopping total. That said, its share of online conversions – that is, shoppers who actually buy something – still remains considerably lower than tablet and PC shoppers.
Many believe this is because people use their smartphones as a part of their shopping process, though not necessarily to buy. They may, for example, look up product details, reviews, prices and availability on a smartphone before actually making a purchase over a larger screen or in person.
Only 1.8 percent of mobile phone site visitors actually made a purchase on Thanksgiving. Still, that represents a 10 percent increase in mobile commerce use for purchasing when compared to last year.