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Mobile and social – along with international traffic – driving UK ecommerce growth

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Mobile retailing grew by 57% in the UK across the lockdown, with 13% of mobile-based sales now coming from social as shopper habits make a permanent shift in device and channel.

So finds the latest Salesforce Q2 Shopping Index, which surveyed more than 1 billion consumers from 41 countries across April, May and June 2020 and found that, in the UK, mobile orders saw a 57% growth, whilst computer orders saw a 43% growth.

In Q2 2020, UK mobile devices took 63% of the order share, whilst computer orders saw 32% and tablet orders just 5% (a continued decrease). Compared with traffic per device in the second quarter of 2020 in the UK, mobile traffic continues to be on the increase with 73% coming from mobile devices, whilst just under a quarter of all UK traffic 23% came from computers.

Social traffic from mobile devices continued to increase for online retailers in the second quarter of 2020, with 13% of the share of visits from social media platforms. Only 1% of social media traffic came from computers in Q2 2020, highlighting UK consumers preference to browse social media on mobile device.

Looking internationally

The study also found that digital consumers are shopping intentionally during the pandemic: While large increases in traffic during a shopping moment like the holiday season usually means that conversion rate falls, Q2 bucked that trend.

Digital traffic to sites in the UK grew by 36% over Q2 2019, driven primarily by significant growth in mobile traffic (49%), followed by computers (27%). Globally, conversion rates reached 3% globally, up 35% since last year’s Q2 conversion rate of 2.2%, with health and beauty sites hitting close to a 4.1% conversion rate.

Salesforce’s UKI Head of Retail & TTH (Travel, Transport & Hospitality) , Michael Green, comments: “This quarter’s results confirm that shopping habits have changed for good, and that the shift to ecommerce will long outlast the pandemic. As the UK continues to respond to the crisis, digital revenue in the months between April and June grew 45% compared to the previous year. This recent surge in digital activity, which highlights the effect that lockdown has had on consumer shopping habits, sets a new benchmark for digital commerce as we head into the autumn and winter shopping seasons.”

Green concludes: “We’ve seen that retailers that had a digital ecommerce strategy in place were better positioned to weather the disruption caused by the Covid-19 crisis. A core part of retailers’ strategies going forward must be focused on utilising technology that will provide useful intelligence, including insights into product, stock, the supply chain and buying trends of customers. This will help retailers remain relevant and allow them to build robust plans to future proof against further crises.”

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