Mobile Now Accounts for 36% Share of Digital Commerce in the US

May 4, 2022

Digital commerce spending jumped by 31% year-over-year in Q4 2021 to reach $281.3 billion, easily the highest-ever quarter for online spending (with the next-highest being the previous quarter’s $215.8 billion), according to a State of Retail presentation [download page] from Comscore.

The 31% gain in Q4 was also the second-highest going back to Q1 2018, trailing only Q2 2021 (+35%) in growth rate.

All told, digital commerce accounted for almost one-third (31.1%) of consumers’ discretionary spending in Q4. To illustrate the extent to which digital commerce has penetrated the retail space, Comscore’s data shows that in Q4 2010 digital commerce accounted for just 8.3% of consumers’ discretionary dollars.

Mobile Commerce Surged in Q4

It was a big quarter for mobile commerce, which jumped by 44.1% year-over-year, compared to desktop’s 24.7% gain. In so doing, mobile commerce had its first $100 billion quarter, clocking in at $101 billion. It’s no wonder that e-commerce site leaders have named mobile shopper experience improvements as one of their top investment initiatives.

As a result of its big gain, mobile commerce climbed to 36% share of all digital commerce in Q4, after hovering in the 32-34% range for the 2 years prior.

Top Categories on Desktop and Mobile

Whereas Apparel & Accessories was once the top category for e-commerce spending, it has ceded that position. On desktop, Apparel & Accessories fell 2 spots to the 3rd-largest spending category, trailing Grocery, Baby, Pet (+1 from year-earlier period to #1) and Furniture, Appliances, & Equipment (+4 to #2).

Grocery, Baby, Pet was also the top-spending category on mobile in Q4, followed by Apparel & Accessories and Computers & Peripherals. Some of the top 10 categories on mobile were not on the top 10 list for desktop spend: Event Tickets (#8); Jewelry & Watches (#9); and Sports & Fitness (#10).

Comscore highlights the growth in Event Ticket spending, showing it to be the fastest-growing category since Q2 2019, ahead of Furniture & Appliances and Grocery/Baby/Pet. Mobile is dominant in the Event Ticket category, comprising 76% of spend.

Mobile’s influence is smaller in the online grocery (Grocery/Baby/Pet) category, where it accounted for 32% of spend in Q4, although people still used their mobile devices to spend more on Grocery/Baby/Pet ($18.7 billion) than on Apparel ($17.8 billion) during Q4. The fast-growing online grocery category has tripled in online spend between Q4 2018 ($14.8 billion) and Q4 2021 ($58.4 billion).

To learn more, download the presentation here.

Explore More Articles.

Marketing Charts Logo

Stay on the cutting edge of marketing.

Sign up for our free newsletter.

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This