While mobile commerce (m-commerce) has been receiving a significant amount of attention, another popular mobile device, the tablet, is now also being recognized as an invaluable vehicle for commerce opportunities.
In order to benefit from tablet commerce (t-commerce), businesses need to recognize that a desktop site’s interface is different from that of a tablet. For example, mouse clicks are not tracked on a tablet. Instead, swipes and smudges are what matter. In order to appeal to tablet users, it is recommended that sites should feature multi-touch functionality in the right places, such as swiping through long lists of products and full 360 degree spins of product images.
According to a poll by Forrester Research, though t-commerce may be new to the online retail marketplace, many online retailers are recognizing that half of the transactions that occur through mobile commerce are coming from customers using tablet devices.
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It is predicted that by the end of 2012, almost 8 percent of the American population will be using tablets. This makes t-commerce an important focus for companies that wish to expand their reach in the mobile marketplace. Experts are recommending that the time to begin these efforts is right now.
The first recommendation is to create a t-commerce strategy using the company’s existing website. Though tablet users can better use a desktop website than mobile phone users, those sites can still cause issues from certain interface elements. These include mouse “hover” behaviors – as tablets use the finger, not a mouse – and mega-dropdowns, among others.
Using the existing website, a tablet-optimized site can be created. This is much more possible than in the case of m-commerce sites, if only as a result of the screen size.