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Pure-play retailers are leading the way in mobile commerce, but many e-tailers are hiking prices for mobile

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Pure-play etailers such as Play.com and Amazon are outperforming their high street rivals when it comes to implementing mobile commerce, boasting superior design and functionality, according to a new benchmarking study by eDigitalResearch. However, the study also found that some retailers – though not those two high fliers – are upping prices for the mobile channel in a ‘convenience premium’.

Chris Russell, director at eDigitalResearch, comments: “Consumers expect to get the same shopping experience regardless of the method of contact they use and it is important that these areas are addressed so that they get a seamless experience. Having different prices and offers is not only misleading, but will detract consumers from purchasing via their smart devices in future. It is clear from our study that there is a lot of variance across the mobile sites with surveyors particularly struggling with complex homepages and a difficult purchasing experience.”

Play.com and Amazon led across the ten individual benchmark measures with Play.com claiming the top spot at 89.6% for its intuitive navigation, well laid-out shopping basket and easy click-through to purchase. However, scoring 86.8%, M&S ranked second overall for its impressive product information and ease and speed of navigation. Amazon came in a close third, primarily for its keyword search and simple purchasing process.

Across the ten benchmark scores, keyword search and delivery were the best performing areas, with half a dozen sites scoring over 90%, in the ‘excellent’ bracket. Two thirds of the sites surveyed delivered product on-time, but there is still room for improvement as a small number of retailers are currently only offering a ‘click and collect’ service.

Russell concludes: “While still in its infancy, this is an exciting time for mCommerce which has huge potential, and is possibly as big an opportunity for a shift in consumer behaviour that the Internet presented in the mid 1990’s. We are noticing the same elementary mistakes being made that are reminiscent of the beginnings of eCommerce, such as incomplete end dates for credit cards. It will be interesting to see how quickly these errors are ironed out as more retailers embrace mobile as part of their multi-channel strategies.

“We are on the cusp of a new concept of MEcommerce, which puts consumers more firmly in the driving seat through the ability to interact with the brand, whenever they want through any channel of their choice, seamlessly.”

To download the latest report, click here
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