A Fifth of Online Black Friday Purchase Revenues Came From a Smartphone

November 30, 2015

With Black Friday 2015 now a slice of historical fact, the turkey put away for sandwiches for much of a week, and Cyber Monday now on many minds, some exciting facts emerged around Black Friday. Perhaps the biggest was how prevalent smartphone shoppers were, as a new Branding Brand study found that $1 in every $5 in online revenue was generated via a smartphone.

That means a lot of smartphone sales took place this year, and that number is up fully 46 percent against Black Friday 2014. As usual, iPhone took prominence in online shopping, generating 69 percent of smartphone revenue against 31 percent from Android devices. The addition of tablets gave mobile devices a serious edge, and took mobile devices in general to $1 of every $3 generated in online revenue.

Shoppers weren't shy about shoopping cash via mobiles, either; one customer bought an air compressor valued at $9,999 via smartphone, and a tablet user shelled out a combined $5,149 for 14 watches. Those thinking the PCs' day has come and gone, however, should reconsider in light of the fact that someone bought 16 desktop computers on a smartphone, spending $4,639 in the process.

Mobile device users got a fairly early start in the process, with smartphone users peaking in both visits and revenue at 10 a.m. Tablet users saw a one hour lag between peak visits and revenue, but started earlier still, with visits peaking at 8 a.m and revenues peaking an hour later.

Both breeds of mobile shopping were on the rise, as smartphones were up better than a third—37 percent—in conversions, while tablets were up 17 percent. Plus, browsing shoppers fared well with mobile, as 61 percent of total online visits came from mobile devices. That cements the majority solidly, as it represents an 11 percent increase on last year.

Essentially, if a retailer's website isn't optimized for mobile yet—and given Google's recent changes in promoting mobile efforts, that should have been done anyway—there's a volume of shoppers that businesses are missing. Of course, by now most astute retailers have already made the jump, but for those who haven't due to cost constraints or the like, it's a clarion call to make that switch. The desktop / laptop market isn't out of the fray yet, and likely never will be completely, but mobile devices are increasingly key both in terms of presentation and purchase of goods.

Businesses who want the greatest possible sales presence must make the case in both standard online and mobile platforms. That's not always an easy difference to split, but those who do the best job of it will be rewarded well, as the latest numbers from the latest Black Friday make quite clear.

Edited by Stefania Viscusi

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