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Mobile now accounts for more than 10% of all UK eBay purchases

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As more consumers use their smartphones for everything from price comparison to shopping, sales through mobile now account for more than 10% of all purchases on eBay UK. The UK continues to lead the way for mobile commerce, with more people in the UK buying and selling goods via mobile on eBay than in any other European country.

An Ofcom report published last month found that over a quarter of adults and almost half of all teenagers now own a smartphone, with 59% having acquired theirs in the last year. It found that the vast majority of smartphone users (81%) have their mobile switched on all of the time and people confessed to using their smartphones everywhere from the dining table to the bathroom and bedroom.

On eBay UK an item is sold via eBay’s mobile platforms on average every second. In August 2011 alone, over two million items were bought through mobile, with nearly double the amount of men shopping on their mobiles than women.

It’s not just bargains that are being snapped up on-the-move as people buy everything from a Ferrari to a house through their mobile. For the second consecutive month cars top the list of most expensive items. The most expensive item on bought on eBay mobile platforms in July 2011 was a Ferrari F430 Spider F1, which sold for over £70,000.

Last month, the most expensive item bought was a black Bentley Continental GTC Auto, which sold for over £50,000.

A house in the South of France was also in the top ten most expensive items bought in July.

More than one fifth of Brits shopping through their mobiles are aged between 26 and 30. However, it’s not just the smartphone generation who are taking advantage of the convenience that m-commerce offers, as more over 50s are shopping via their mobiles than the under 20s.

Angus McCarey, Retail Director for eBay UK says “With consumers having instant access on-the-move, mobile shopping has come of age and as such retailers who don’t take steps to embrace it now risk being left behind. While it took years for internet shopping to become mainstream, we believe mobile commerce will do it in less than half the time. Indeed, if sales on our UK site are anything to go by, we have never before seen such significant year over year growth – currently at triple digits.

It’s not just the weekly shop that people are now buying regularly through their mobiles; consumers are demonstrating how comfortable they are in purchasing much more expensive items such as supercars and holiday homes.”

The most popular categories in which people have bought via mobile devices in the UK include fashion, DVDs, Film, TV, PC and gaming, consumer electronics, music, sporting goods and jewellery.
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