Mobile Web Purchasing
Mobile web seems to be the “next big thing” according to all the hype I’ve seen over the past two years. Despite the significant investment that some of the larger ecommerce players (aka Amazon, Wallmart, Sears) have made, it still represents a very small percentage of total web sales. Additionally, smart phone penetration is still reletively small in the US (17% was the last figure I saw).
An article in today’s USA Today about mobile web discusses some of the parallels between mobile shopping today, and online shopping 15 years ago. While I still think that mobile purchasing being adopted by the mainstream is a ways off, utilization of mobile websites and mobile applications is increasing used to assist with offline purchasing decisions.
So do you need a mobile site? Yes, and No. If you are a small to mid-sized website (less than $10M) sales I don’t think a dedicated application or mobile website would be the most immediate of your concerns. But – when building your website, you should be conscience of how it looks on a mobile web browsers. You should also be sure to setup your Google Places (and Yahoo, Bing) so the Google Map application shows your information correctly. In the next 2 – 5 years I think you’ll see more adoption of mobile shopping and smart phone usage… so stay tuned…