New research, conducted by Conlumino for eBay, shows that rather than speeding up the shopping process, new technologies will result in UK consumers spending nearly twice as long browsing, researching and comparing prices of items.
UK consumers currently spend approximately 1 hour 20 minutes, considering, researching and buying non-basic items, such as fashion, items for their homes and gardens and electronics. The research predicts this will increase to around 2 hours 30 minutes by 2014.
The improved functionality of smartphones, like that expected to feature in the iPhone 5, and rapid advancements in other digital technology is already resulting in more brands and retailers using new services like augmented reality to display and promote their products to consumers. This has the effect of lengthening the shopping process as consumers can try on items virtually or see how goods could look in their home.
Location based mobile technology allows consumers to compare prices of items locally as they shop and enables retailers to target consumer with specific personalised deals, again providing more choice and extending the time spent by consumers researching and considering what to buy.
With more and more people now using a smartphone or tablet device, mobile shopping is going from strength to strength. Only last month eBay revised its forecast of global transactions through mobile from $8bn to $10bn in 2012.
In the run up to Christmas there will doubtless be thousands buying the new iPhone and equally a large number of people buying a bargain priced older model iPhone. Others will be buying alternative smartphones such as HTC, Samsung, Blackberry. Whilst it may be expensive to create your own mobile app (and probably not a good investment), there’s no reason why your website shouldn’t be fully mobile enabled.
Making sure your products are listed on eBay with up to date pricing and the latest Item Specific’s completed will also give you exposure to the millions who have downloaded eBay’s mobile apps and will be browsing on their new smartphones.