Three-Quarters of US online retailers are developing mobile strategies

Three-Quarters of online retailers are developing mobile strategies, according to Research and are spending £112,000 per year on developing mobile solutions.

Online retailers will have to speed up their mobile marketing initiatives to satisfy consumers’ increasing appetite for mobile applications.

Some 74% of online retailers have either already developed or are developing a mobile strategy, One in five boasts having a fully-implemented mobile strategy in place already, according to a US survey the “The State Of Retailing Online: Marketing, Social Commerce and Mobile Report” survey published by Forrester Research and, the US National Retail Federation’s digital division.

“It’s imperative for online retailers to stay on top of what their customers want and these days it’s all mobile all the time,” said Scott Silverman, Executive Director, “Mobile commerce has tremendous potential and will no doubt grow to become a significant part of overall sales volume in years to come. Whether to increase customer satisfaction grow their brand or drive traffic and sales, online retailers are in this game to stay.”

Sucharita Mulpuru, vice president at Forrester and lead author of the report, said  “Mobile investment is modest now, but we see that it will pick up in the future, especially among the biggest brands that have already invested significant amounts in their mobile operations.”

Many of retailers polled are using mobile as a way to provide product and price information, store information, and coupons to support their current in-store experience.

Investment levels in mobile are quite high with some spending on average £112,000 on their mobile sites this year, large multichannel retailers are spending several times that amount, while smaller online pure plays on average are investing much less.

Unfortunately, while investment levels are quite high returns are still low, retailers reported that their mobile browsers are generating a little less than three percent of overall site traffic and just two percent of revenue.

Additionally the retailers are using a mixture of paid search, email and affiliate marketing to advertise their sites with retailers spending nearly 40% of their marketing budget on paid search.

Retailers are finding value in social media marketing, but the ROI for driving online sales remains murky. Listening to customers is the most significant objective for social tools according to respondents, with 80% of retailers reporting that they are pursuing social strategies to experiment and learn. And while 28% noted that social marketing has helped grow their business, direct sales from social tactics are not widely measured.