Mobile eCommerce (or m-commerce, as many call it) is undergoing rapid growth, and only the best shopping cart software allows you to take advantage of this growing eCommerce market.
The way in which people access the Internet is undergoing rapid change as more and more people surf the Web on the go.
People expect simple, easy to use mobile Web applications that make it easy to find what they’re after – and complete transactions.
If you are starting a new eCommerce site then it is vital that you choose a shopping cart solution that has excellent mobile support.
If you already have an online store, then hopefully implementing mobile features will not be too time-consuming and expensive – if it is, consider migrating to one of the eCommerce platforms discussed in this article as they make m-commerce a cinch.
What is mobile eCommerce Web design?
Mobile eCommerce Web design helps to improve the buying experience on smaller devices. While many new devices do a good job of rendering traditional web pages, it may be that your online store stands to benefit by using responsive Web design.
Responsive Web design uses device detection or feature detection to serve CSS or HTML depending on which device is requesting a page. This is a far more efficient solution than creating an entirely new .mobi domain for mobile devices.
The ultimate goal is to provide customers using a small device with a great browsing experience that makes it easy to find and purchase what they need.
Traditional webpages are often not as effective on mobile devices because they contain too much information, that doesn’t necessarily fit onto the smaller screen.
How important is mobile eCommerce?
Mobile eCommerce is taking off. There’s simply no other way to describe it.
Mobile commerce is set to grow around 40% year on year until around 2016. By 2017 most analysts predict that over a quarter of all online transactions will be mobile – around $31 billion in spending by 2016.
Add to that the fact that people are spending more and more time on mobile apps (as opposed to websites), and there will be an estimated 10 billion mobile, Internet enabled devices being used (yes, that’s more than the population of the planet) around the world in four years time.
The point being that lots of people are starting to use tablets and smartphones to find the information they need without having to sit at a desk.
Offering a better buying experience to mobile users can help drive sales and growth, and m-commerce features will steadily become more and more important over the next few years.
It’s not a case of will you implement m-commerce features, but when.
The top 5 eCommerce solutions with mobile support
Fortunately, online store owners using high quality eCommerce website builders have little to fear. Mobile eCommerce features are steadily being introduced, improved and refined with little to no effort or expense required on your behalf.
Let’s take a look at the leading eCommerce platforms and their mobile eCommerce capabilities…
Shopify provides an excellent hassle free mobile eCommerce solution – it does it automatically. Using Shopify means that your eCommerce store is already mobile and can transact securely on a range of mobile devices – iPhone, Android, Blackberry, and other smartphones.
Shopify also provides a mobile eCommerce store management app that allows you to manage a store from your mobile device.
Go have a cup of coffee with your customers, but take your mobile device with to track new purchases.
BigCommerce is rapidly becoming one of my favorite eCommerce platforms because of their wide range of features, fine grained control and great flexibility.
It’s no surprise then that implementing m-commerce features (by enabling a mobile template) with BigCommerce is quick and easy, completely free, and takes no more than a minute or two. Here’s how:
- Click on Design in your store’s control panel
- Select the mobile tab and check yes, enable the mobile template
- Select which devices you want to support and click Save
Hey presto! Your BigCommerce eCommerce store is now an m-commerce store.
Volusion, like BigCommerce, requires that you enable support for mobile eCommerce from the store’s administration area, and comes free of charge.
Volusion takes the number three spot behind Shopify and Bigcommerce because it simply does not have the range of support that the other platforms implement. With that said, around 90% of your mobile customers will find Volusion’s m-commerce features easy to use, and no doubt Volusion will cater for the remaining 10% in the near future.
Additional m-Commerce solutions
It’s important to note that these top 3 eCommerce website builders are not the only m-commerce games in town. Here are some other worthwhile mobile products and services for eCommerce:
Do you own an eCommerce store? Have you implemented mobile support? Has this made a difference to your bottom line? Share your thoughts, tips, and experience on mobile eCommerce in the comments, or join me on Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ to continue the conversation.