High Street turns to smartphones and tablets for growth as m-commerce soars
Research sponsored by NetSuite Inc., a vendor of cloud-based financials / ERP software suites, today revealed that nearly one in every £10 spent with UK high street retailers comes from mobile channels, totalling an approximate turnover of £45bn in 2011. With 23% growth expected, m-commerce turnover in 2012 is predicted to reach £56bn. The research is based on economic models provided by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) and primary research of 200 UK high street retail managers, including seven of the top 10 retailers in the UK conducted by Vanson Bourne.
Retailers can learn about these opportunities at the Retail Bulletin’s 2nd Mobile Retailing Summit, Wednesday 26th September. The event is in London and for programme details and registration, click here.
The report reveals that despite the recent return to recession, UK retailers have a positive outlook for the year ahead, with 87% predicting positive revenue growth and an average expected revenue increase of 10%. M-commerce is expected to play an increasing role in achieving this, with 80% of high street retailers now have a mobile-optimised eCommerce site or smartphone app, or plan to build one in the next year. This group expects m-commerce revenues to increase by a quarter (23%) over the next year. Based on the proportions of retailers using m-commerce and the proportion of revenues derived from it, total turnover from m-commerce is predicted to increase to £56bn over the next year.
With 45% of the UK’s population now owning a smartphone (Google / Ipsos, Jan 2012), retailers need to ensure they can serve customers via these new platforms, and not be overtaken by competitors. 56% of retailers view new sales channels as a main driver of business growth over the coming year, and just over half (52%) view competitors’ m-commerce apps and sites as a threat to their sales. Retailers also have their eyes on social media, with two-thirds (65%) expecting sales from social media venues to become an important consideration over the next 12 months.
Colin Edwards, economist at CEBR, commented, “In the context of a difficult macroeconomic climate, retailers’ expectations seem very positive and may ultimately prove to be somewhat optimistic – but it’s clear that the importance of alternate revenue streams such as m-commerce can be a crucial component for retail success moving forward.”
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