Mobile Commerce: Email’s Influence Largest on Phones; Paid Search Drives Tablet Revenues

July 10, 2014

Custora-Share-E-Commerce-Rev-by-Channel-Device-in-2013-July2014A new report [download page] from Custora detailing the growth in mobile commerce finds some interesting divergences in revenue drivers across mobile phones, tablets and desktops. According to the report, email drove 26.7% of revenues on mobile phones last year, compared to 23.1% on tablets and 20.9% on desktops, with this the latest finding to demonstrate email’s influence on mobile commerce. At the same time, the influence of paid search was greatest on tablets, driving a plurality 24.8% of revenues, compared to 18% on desktops and 13.4% on phones.

Of note, organic search fueled a larger share of revenues on desktops (23.5%) than did paid search, with the same true for mobile phones (16% and 13.4%, respectively). But on tablets, organic search (15.4% share of revenues) trailed paid search by a considerable margin.

MarketLive previously reported that for the merchants on its platform, paid search accounted for 36.5% of search traffic but an outsized 47.9% of revenue from search last year, suggesting that paid search traffic is more valuable than organic search traffic.

Meanwhile, results from the Custora analysis indicate that social media drove less than 1% of revenues across each of the devices. It should be noted, however, that Custora’s figures are based on a last-touch analysis, which typically undervalues the role of social.

As for all the buzz about cross-device shopping? Only 12% of customers are making purchases on more than one device as of Q1 2014, per the report, with 76% using desktops exclusively. But, the percentage of customers shopping across devices has tripled since the start of 2012, and those shopping using multiple devices were found to have a customer lifetime value (CLV) 19% higher than average during Q1. [Custora notes that this “does not necessarily imply they are more valuable because they buy on multiple devices. In fact, the most valuable shoppers (= those who spend the most) make more purchases, thus increasing the likelihood of them buying on more than one device.”]

Of the 3 devices analyzed, desktop-only shoppers have the highest CLV, followed by tablet-only shoppers and then phone-only shoppers.

About the Data: The Custora Pulse is based on Custora’s analysis of over 70 million online shoppers and over $10 billion in e-commerce revenue across over 100 US-based online retailers.

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