The retail industry is experiencing a revolution on a par with the introduction of plastic payments in the 1950s or the launch of the internet and e-commerce in the early 1990s. The mobile device, a gadget we check more than 200 times every day, is changing the way we discover and buy products and services.
PayPal predicts that we won’t have physical wallets by 2016. Visa Europe predicts that 50% of all its transactions will be made via mobile by 2020, and retailers are already reporting that up to 12% of their traffic comes from mobile channels (eDigitalResearch, May 2011). There is no doubt the market is buzzing with expectation and retailers are starting to catch-on.
As the internet caught fire and UK consumers flocked to buy anything from music files to bicycle parts online, many retailers were left struggling to catch up with this changing retail model. The challenge was to retain customers, but competition was coming from new players who understood search engine optimisation (SEO), online marketing and the customer’s desire to buy anything from them at any time.