Using its analytics resources, IBM predicts that this holiday season shoppers will use mobile devices more than ever to access retail sites.
IBM predicts that during this year's
hot November holiday season, an unprecedented 15 percent of people in the United
States logging onto a retailer's Website are expected to do so through a mobile
IBM came to this conclusion based on
cloud analytics findings from the company's cache of analytics solutions.
Indeed, based on data from the IBM Coremetrics Benchmark, all online holiday
shopping in November is also expected to grow as much as 15 percent versus
November 2010, with the growing influence of mobile devices such as iPads and
Android phones being among the key factors.
IBM's Coremetrics Benchmark analysis gathers data
directly from the Websites of more than 500 leading U.S. retailers. Using
analytics technology, the benchmark measures real-time sales data and online
marketing results to uncover shopping trends across a variety of channels,
including social media, mobile devices and other online sources where consumers
interact with their brands.
"This November holiday season will mark
the true advent of the post-PC era with consumers demonstrating a heightened
interest in adding mobile devices to their holiday shopping arsenal," John
Squire, director of product management for the Enterprise Marketing Management
Group at IBM Industry Solutions, said in a statement. "In response, savvy
retailers must invest in delivering hyper-personalized, smarter commerce
shopping experiences that are capable of building loyalty through multiple
channels with exceptionally relevant promotions, free shipping and more."
This is the fourth annual Coremetrics
Benchmark campaign, and it reveals some interesting predictions about the 2011
November holiday online retail environment. In addition to predicting that
total online sales in November will experience impressive growth of 12 to 15
percent over the same period in 2010, IBM also predicted that record numbers of
consumers will shift their shopping from the PC to their mobile device this
holiday season. In October, nearly 11 percent of people used a mobile device to
visit a retailer's site, up from 4.2 percent in October 2010. Additionally,
mobile sales continue to increase, reaching a high of 9.6 percent in October
2011, up from 3.4 percent in October 2010.
Also, IBM predicts that for the first
time, Android users will demonstrate similar levels of mobile shopping as
iPhone users. These October 2011 numbers show the iPhone accounting for 4.0
percent of mobile traffic and Android 3.5 percent. Also, shoppers using an iPad
will lead to retail purchases more often per visit than other mobile devices,
IBM predicts. This trend is based on October 2011 figures where iPad conversion
rates reached 6.8 percent as compared with the overall mobile device conversion
rate of 3.6 percent. And the so-called surgical shoppers are expected to
go mobile as well. IBM predicts that mobile shoppers will display a laser focus
on buying this season that surpasses that of other online shoppers with a 44.2
percent bounce rate on mobile devices versus online shopping rates of 37.3
In addition, IBM predicts a bigger
impact from social networks on online shopping this year. IBM said while the
industry will see modest increases in direct social buying, the influence of
these sites and services will eclipse that of other channels. According to
October conversion rates, 9.2 percent of consumers who visited a retail site
from a social media site made a purchase. This compares with 5.5 percent of all
direct online shopping last year. Also in 2011, the vast majority of social
shopping will continue to come from Facebook, which in October accounted for 77
percent of all traffic from social networks, IBM said.
Darryl K. Taft covers the development tools and developer-related issues beat from his office in Baltimore. He has more than 10 years of experience in the business and is always looking for the next scoop. Taft is a member of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and was named 'one of the most active middleware reporters in the world' by The Middleware Co. He also has his own card in the 'Who's Who in Enterprise Java' deck.