The world is becoming increasingly mobile-centric. A growing number of people are basing their lives heavily on mobile technology, using smartphones and tablets in their daily lives. As mobile devices continue to establish themselves as an integral part of modern society, the demand for mobile services and engagement is on the rise. Consumers want to be able to shop online with their mobile devices while also being able to make payments for goods and services from these devices at physical locations.
The value of mobile commerce is primarily financial. The mobile payments market is expected to reach $3.2 trillion in value by 2017, powered by the growing number of people that are making payments from their mobile devices each year. Mobile payments will still account for the minority of total financial transactions. In the U.S. alone, more than $4,400 trillion in transactions were made in 2012. The value of mobile commerce is much more than the amount of total transactions being made in a given year, however.
Convenience is part of what makes mobile shopping and payments attractive to consumers. People that participate in mobile commerce often do so because it is simply more convenient than actually going to a store or paying a bill from a traditional computer. Retailers are working to take advantage of the convenient nature of mobile commerce, offering mobile shoppers delivery services for the products they purchase online. Consumers can also avoid long lines at physical stores that support mobile payments, allowing them to shop more quickly.
For consumers, whether or not mobile commerce is worthwhile largely depends on convenience, but security should also be taken into consideration. Over the past few years, there have been major data breaches among retailers that are embracing mobile payments. These breaches have compromised the financial information of many consumers and highlighted some of the faults in the mobile commerce space.