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Mobile share of visits to UK retail sites increases to 64%

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Smartphone shopping is now the default for U.K. shoppers with 64% of all website visits to retailers last year coming from mobile devices, according to digital market intelligence company, SimilarWeb .

The study revealed that on average 64.54% of visits to all online retail sites in the U.K last year were via mobile phones, compared to 35.46% for desktop. This reflected a further 2.63% increase for mobile’s market share in the online U.K retail market last year. The UK now has a bigger share of mobile phone shopping than the U.S (55%), Germany (43%) and France (35%). However India remained the standout leader for mobile shopping, with a 65% share, over desktop, last year.

On average, across 2015, all of the most popular 10 UK retail sites, including Amazon, eBay and Argos, registered a bigger share of visits from mobile, compared to desktop visits (see below).

The shift to mobile also represented a retail challenge — while on average U.K desktop visitors browsed 12.4 pages per session in 2015, this dropped to 7.3 pages when sites were visited via smartphones.

Similarly, on desktop, UK shoppers spent 7.21 minutes on an average retail site viewed from desktop last year, dropping to an average of 5 minutes and 5 seconds on a mobile device.

Pavel Tuchinsky, SimilarWeb Digital Insights Manager, explains: “Shopping via mobile is now the default, with all leading retailers experiencing a majority of visits to their sites via smartphones. The UK is now a European leader in mobile shopping, far ahead of France, and Germany.

“However engagement and time on site has not been maintained in the transition towards mobile shopping. Retailers must continue to embrace the rapid change towards mobile, including better checkout flows, and integrations between desktop and mobile sites.”


Top UK retail sites average monthly mobile share by visits in 2015

  • 64%

  • eBay 59%

  • Argos 76%

  • Tesco 71%

  • Next 72%

  • Asos 62%

  • John Lewis 60%

  • M&S 62%

  • Currys 70%

  • Boots 75%

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