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40% of purchases travel across devices, driven by mobile and apps, analysis of 1.4bn transactions shows

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Four in 10 purchases occur across multiple devices or channels and of that, close to one-third are completed on a mobile device, indicating that consumers are using numerous devices along their path to purchase and are regularly buying on mobile.

So finds a global study of 1.4 billion online transactions carried out by Criteo and published in its Q4 2015 State of Mobile Commerce Report out today.

According to the report, retailers with a strong mobile shopping experience ended 2015 on a high with impressive sales results, shifting many mobile device browsers into buyers. For brands to win with the mobile friendly consumer, they need to invest in a mobile marketing strategy that meets consumer wants and needs across all devices.

In Q4 2015, mobile transaction share saw 15% growth from 2014, reaching 30% of all eCommerce transactions. Across mobile devices, tablets drove higher value sales than smartphones, but iOS devices saw higher order values than the average.

The smartphone is increasingly becoming the mobile purchase device of choice and accounts for a majority of mobile sales worldwide.

As brands optimize their mobile shopping experience, they should focus on smartphones as a key vehicle for eCommerce.

Smartphones accounted for 60% of all mobile transactions in the US, driven by the combination of better transaction ability, ubiquity, big bright screens and fast wireless broadband.

The smartphone accounts for a majority of mobile sales globally, and this is most pronounced in Japan and South Korea.

But it is cross device that is most intriguing. Consumers are comfortably using multiple devices — laptops, tablets and smartphones — in all stages of their shopping journey, says the study. The need to better understand consumer behavior, influence and intent are key components to engaging them in their cross-device journey.

37% of desktop buyers browsed the same retailer’s site on at least one other device before purchasing. Cross-device shoppers who completed their purchase on a tablet were the most likely to have used multiple devices in the path-to-purchase, with 43% of tablet shoppers using multiple devices in their shopping journey.

As we have seen in other studies apps are increasingly driving sales and app shoppers spend more. Criteo’s research also points to apps being a key to tapping into these cross device shoppers.

According to the report, retailers and brands with intuitive apps that highlight relevant products to consumers and remove barriers to purchase see stronger sales and higher values.

Building an app that displays useful products and streamlines the path to purchase is necessary to driving engagement, conversion and revenue, the study says.

Of those retailers that have prioritized the mobile experience, mobile apps accounted for 54% of all mobile transactions in the retail industry, and 58% of mobile transactions in the travel industry.

Shoppers using mobile apps browsed 286% more products than mobile web shoppers, contributing to an add-to-basket rate 90% higher than mobile browsers.

The overall conversion rate on an app was 120% higher than mobile browsers.

“Criteo’s quarterly Mobile Commerce Report demonstrates that mobile is an essential component of commerce today, with most consumers browsing and buying across multiple devices,” says Jonathan Wolf, Chief Product Officer, Criteo. “In order to better understand this digitally-savvy consumer, marketers need to stop looking at each device on its own, and start understanding the user behind them. Multi-device behavior is the new normal. Criteo’s new Universal Match solution enables advertisers to zero in on shoppers at the time they are most likely to purchase, with a targeted message across all of their devices.”

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