Whether you are a business owner, a marketer, a techie, or a general consumer, the fact that world commerce is moving to your smartphone can’t be new information in 2020. To give you a clear idea of just how relentless this pace of migration to mobile devices is, we have put together 50 m-commerce statistics that cover a wide range of current trends and future estimates.
Wowing M-Commerce Statistics
- Global m-commerce was expected to reach $2.3T in 2019
- More than 1B mobile phone users have made use of their phones for banking worldwide
- Mobile accounts for over 40% of e-commerce in terms of number of transactions
- 67% of the global population owned a mobile phone in 2019
- 79% of smartphone users have made a purchase online using their mobile device in the last 6 months
- US mobile retail revenues are expected to amount to $339.03B in 2020
- 53.9% of all US retail e-commerce will be m-commerce by 2021
Before we continue, let’s get one simple question out of the way: What do you mean by m-commerce? M-commerce or mobile commerce is the buying and selling of goods and services through wireless handheld devices such as smartphones and PDAs. Also known as next-generation e-commerce, it allows users to access the Internet on the go. While retail is an important part of it, m-commerce encompasses a much wider realm including banking, ticketing and travel, health services, and more.
Alright, let’s jump right in and see how mobile e-commerce has been doing in the last few years, and how we can expect it to develop in the near future.
We all have a small computer in our pockets. It’s also the most powerful wallet on the planet. Here’s why.
1. 67% of the global population owns a mobile phone in 2019.
The number of mobile phone users in the world is expected to pass the five billion mark in 2019, with 1.5 billion in China and 1.1 billion in India. 62.9% of the world population owned a mobile phone by 2016. The mobile phone has become an indispensable part in the lives of people across the world thanks to the many important functions it performs, including its role in commerce.
2. 50% of mobile phone users globally are smartphone users.
Most of the mobile market growth can be attributed to the increasing popularity of smartphones. By 2014, 38% of all mobile phone users were smartphone users. According to mobile phone sales statistics, this share is likely to have passed 50% by 2018. Smartphones are one of the technologies with the fastest adoption rate in human history.
3. Mobile data traffic around the world is projected to increase by 700% between 2016 and 2021.
This increase is from a substantial base to begin with. According to Cisco’s Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast, this striking growth will be spread uniformly across the world. As expected, a little over half of this will be driven by video content, but much of it will be driven by rise in shopping on mobile devices also.
4. What percentage of e-commerce is mobile? In terms of number of transactions, over 40%.
The widespread use of mobile devices is not limited to essential functions, of course. With feature-rich mobile devices available at affordable prices and users’ increasing comfort in spending online, online transactions on mobile are becoming increasingly common. Consumers are spending more on the go instead of waiting to reach their computer to make a purchase.
5. 79% of smartphone users have made a purchase online using their mobile device in the last 6 months.
That’s close to a billion people worldwide! People are putting their move to smarter phones to good use in terms of m-commerce. Nearly 4 out of 5 smartphone users have made at least one purchase in the last 6 months. This includes users who are experiencing mobile transactions for the first time and joining the large cohort that’s already converted over.
6. By 2021, 53.9% of all US retail e-commerce is expected to be generated via m-commerce.
In 2017, this share was just 34.5%, reflecting the tremendous growth in m-commerce. This mobile commerce sales forecast is based on the trends being seen in improvement in connectivity, device features, website responsiveness, and people’s comfort with shopping online.
7. Worldwide, the share of m-commerce in all e-commerce is expected to rise to 72.9% by 2021.
Interestingly, the m-commerce revolution is even more prominent in emerging markets, driving its global share to 72.9% of all e-commerce by 2021. This is a massive rise from 58.9% in just 2017. While China is responsible, by far, for this growth, figures from India and other developing economies are not worth scoffing at, either.
8. Global m-commerce was expected to rake in $2.3T in 2019.
What does this translate to in absolute value? Total mobile e-commerce sales are expected to reach $3.56 trillion by 2021—a more than 250% jump from $0.97 trillion in 2016. Notably, this figure excludes online sales of travel and event tickets.
9. Global m-commerce is growing at 29% compared to the e-commerce growth rate of 22%.
The above growth figures tell a clear story when it comes to m-commerce vs e-commerce growth. M-commerce is growing at a notably higher pace than commerce conducted though other types of devices.
10. US mobile retail revenues are expected to amount to $339.03B in 2020.
Mobile retail revenues in the US are keeping pace with global growth and are expected to grow by 63.4% in just two years between 2018 and 2020.
11. Online shopping on mobile increased from 8% to 15%, while on desktop dropped from 78% to 63%.
To put m-commerce statistics 2020 in perspective, there’s value in taking a look at some older ones. Over the 2016-2017 period, the share of shopping on smartphones in the overall online shopping numbers in the U.S. almost doubled from 8% to 15%. The share of shopping on tablets also doubled from 5% to 10%. This increase came at the expense of the share of desktop shopping, which saw a decrease from 78% of the overall to 63%.
12. More than a third of online Black Friday 2018 sales were completed on smartphones.
A more current indication that m-commerce trends are on track to live up to the estimates for the next few years is the data from Adobe analysts who tracked sales during Black Friday 2018 and found that, from 29.1% just one year earlier, the share of smartphone shopping had risen to above 35%. On Cyber Monday, 54% of visitors came from mobile devices, while around 30% made purchases on their mobile device.
13. Categories with the highest mobile share of purchases are also the ones with the most rapid ecommerce growth.
Mobile purchases tend to be higher for relatively cheap and low consideration products such as video games, movies, and digital content, and lower for more expensive categories such as computer hardware. An interesting feature of mobile vs. desktop usage stats is that mobile may be enabling the purchase of products that were previously less likely to be purchased online altogether, noting that eliminating the friction of buying on mobile (smaller screens, privacy concerns, etc.) is critical for retailers.
Stats on different types of m-commerce
Smartphones give users the power to choose between many applications and payment methods.
14. The number of proximity mobile payment transaction users will surpass 1B in 2020.
Using smartphones to make payments, which is a segment related to m-commerce, is also on the rise. In 2017, the number of mobile proximity payment users stood at 721.2 million worldwide. Popular application areas are paying for transport and transit, as well as retail goods and services.
15. The proximity mobile payment transaction value in the US is expected to be $113.8B in 2019.
(Source: Statista, technode)
While China remains the leader in proximity mobile payment, accounting for 60% of the worldwide user base, m-commerce statistics show that the rest of the world is catching up fast. As of 2015, about 12.5% of smartphone users in the US were already using proximity mobile payment solutions when the total transaction value was merely $9.8 billion.
16. The global mobile-payments market will have a compound annual growth rate of 33% to reach $4,574B by 2023.
(Source: Allied Market Research)
The mobile-payments market was valued at $601 billion in 2016. This 33.63% CAGR is largely driven by the Asia Pacific region. If seen sector-wise, the mobile payment market for hospitality & transportation applications is expected to witness the highest growth rate during the forecast period.
17. The global mobile wallet market size is expected to reach $3142.2B by 2022.
(Source: Zion Market Research)
Adding digital wallets to your e-commerce store can help you capture the mobile shopper at checkout by offering an easy, secure way to pay in a single click. For example, allowing mobile shoppers to pay with PayPal leverages a trusted brand name, while eliminating the need for shoppers to enter credit card details and shipping addresses on a tiny screen.
18. The number of mobile coupon users worldwide was projected to exceed 1B by the end of 2019.
There were 560 million mobile coupon users globally in 2014. This number was expected to nearly double by the time 2019 ends. The percentage of companies using mobile coupons for marketing is also increasing steadily. An estimated 31 billion ecoupons are expected to be redeemed in 2019, of which more than 90% would be mobile coupons. This means the share of mobile coupons being redeemed is around 80% of coupons being redeemed via mobile way back in 2015.
19. More than 1B mobile phone users have made use of their phones for banking worldwide.
(Source: Juniper Research, Statista, Statista)
Mobile phone statistics show that the highest penetration of m-banking is in the developed markets. In the US, the number was expected to reach 111 million by 2016. Almost 70% of millennials in the US were using mobile banking in 2018.
20. Roughly 1.2B people worldwide have access to a bank account compared to 5B unique mobile phone subscribers.
The fact that there are more than 4 times as many people with mobile phones subscriptions than there are with access to a bank account with payment capabilities makes it clear why mobile payments are the future of commerce. No wonder, then, that any financial institution looking to increase its user base is going mobile in an aggressive manner.
21. PayPal’s annual mobile payment volume is increasing at 46% year-on-year.
The impressive payment volume growth rate for PayPal, the world’s most popular online payments system (not counting China), is a good indicator of mobile e-commerce growth. In the most recently reported year (2018), the payment provider’s mobile payment volume amounted to $227 billion, up from $155 billion in the preceding fiscal period.
22. Mobile travel booking volume in the US is expected to grow to $109B by 2021.
This would be equivalent to about 50% of the overall digital booking volume. In 2017, about 40% of the total digital volume of $189.6 billion was accounted for by mobile transactions. Consumers are booking more travel on mobile due to larger smartphone screens, easier mobile payment methods, and overall habits shifting to mobile. Also, airlines, hotels, and online travel agencies have made both apps and mobile websites easier to use.
23. 90% of travel brands say having a mobile strategy is critical or very important to the future success of their organization.
According to this 2017 global study of m-commerce trends in the travel industry, 84% of travel brands also intended to increase their investment in mobile and 60% were looking to enhance or replace their app from 2018 onward. As travelers get more comfortable with searching and paying for travel through their smartphones, companies in the sector have realized that they can ignore mobile customers only at their peril.
24. The global mobile health market will grow at a CAGR of 41% between 2015 and 2020, faster than any other segment of the digital health market.
(Source: Statista, Statista)
The global digital health market was valued at $80 billion in 2015 and is estimated to grow to $200 billion by 2020. Much of this growth is credited to the mobile health market, which will grow to $46 billion by 2020.
Mobile shopping statistics
Which regions have the highest density of mobile shoppers? Let’s find out.
25. At 46%, global mobile shopping penetration is the highest in the Asia Pacific region.
The combined play of improving economics and infrastructure for mobile shopping and lack of development in alternative modes is driving mobile shopping penetration in the Asia Pacific region. For many global players like Amazon and Walmart, the greatest opportunity comes from these markets.
26. Retail m-commerce sales in India will reach nearly $38B in 2020.
(Source: Statista, AsiaAssist)
Retail m-commerce sales will grow to $37.96 billion by 2020, up from $30.2B in 2019, nearly 50% of total retail e-commerce sales of $79.41 billion. Stats on m-commerce in India in 2018 point to a value of about $23.6 billion. While all this might seem measly in comparison to the $1.5 trillion Chinese smartphone users are expected to spend in 2019, the India figure would mark a more than 6X jump from 2015. The planned e-commerce entry of Reliance, the largest home-grown conglomerate to challenge Amazon and Walmart will have an effect on m-commerce as well.
27. APAC countries, especially India and China, also show the highest consumer confidence in mobile payment adoption at 24%.
In this slightly old country-wise study of consumer confidence in mobile payment adoption, while 17% of worldwide shoppers are shown strongly disagreeing with using their mobile phones as the main tool for purchasing, 24% of shoppers in India and China strongly agree in response to the same query.
28. 51% of mobile shoppers in the US make their purchases via apps.
Apps score marginally higher than mobile websites in the shopping department. However, trends on app commerce show their share compared to mobile websites will grow, given the more streamlined experience and personalization they offer shoppers.
29. Shopping is the fastest growing mobile app category with 54% year-on-year growth.
In terms of app categories shopping continues to see more growth, compared to others like entertainment, news, and finance. The 54% increase in usage sessions is in comparison to an average growth of 6% and a negative growth for some other popular categories like gaming and lifestyle.
30. With a reach of 75.4%, Amazon was the most popular shopping app in the US in mid-2018.
In the US, Amazon has a far greater reach than its competitors. In fact, Amazon sees as many shoppers as Walmart and eBay combined. Global figures might be skewed because of players like Alibaba and Tencent, which rule the roost in China.
31. 76% of consumers shop on mobile devices because it saves time.
(Source: Dynamic Yield)
What are the advantages of m-commerce for consumers? For a vast majority of shoppers, the primary reason for shopping on mobile devices is that it allows them to do it on the go, saving them time compared to desktop or laptop shopping. It is important, then, for online business owners to design the shopping experience such that it actually saves time for their customers.
32. 70% of mobile searches lead to action within an hour.
Mobile shoppers reward a brisk shopping experience with quick decision-making. In comparison, it takes the same share of desktop users a full month to reach a buying decision. The bottomline is – if you impress your online store visitors, you can expect to be profitable.
33. Smartphones had a conversion rate of 1.53% in the US in Q2 2019.
(Source: Statista, CMS)
For various reasons, however, mobile commerce statistics 2018 show that the conversion rates for smartphones are significantly lower compared to tablets, desktops, and laptops. Only 1.53% of e-commerce visits on smartphones get converted into purchases. The figure for tablets is 3.36%, while the more traditional means of shopping online score at 4.14%. Thankfully, according to another report by CMS, smartphone conversion rates have improved by 64% compared to average desktop conversion rates in the last two years or so.
34. Mobile shopping carts have an abandonment rate of 85.65%.
This is in comparison to the average abandonment rate of 80.74% for tablets and about 73% for desktops. M-commerce statistics show that online stores are often not optimized for mobile, with issues like slow load times being very common. To top this off, many stores force customers to zoom in and out to navigate a page. Other, smaller inconveniences also do their part to drive cart abandonment on desktop, such as mandatory registrations and long checkout processes. These are even more significant in the case of mobile e-commerce.
35. The average value of global smartphone shopping orders is $79.33.
Smartphones also lose out in terms of average order values. Traditional devices have an average shopping order of $179.88, more than twice that of smartphones. As per mobile website stats, this results in smartphones accounting for only about 42% of e-retail revenues, despite getting 62% of retail website visits.
36. Only 12% of consumers find shopping on the mobile web convenient.
(Source: Dynamic Yield)
On the other hand, smartphone shopping scores really low on convenience. The issues shoppers face include sites not designed with phone screens in mind, popups and other intrusive ads, lack of adequate information, etc.
37. When people have a negative brand experience on mobile, they are over 60% less likely to purchase from that brand in the future than if they have a positive experience.
(Source: Google, LinkedIn)
Mobile users statistics show that shoppers on smartphones tend to be more finicky than other digital shoppers. As an online business owner, you generally get one shot to impress your visitor. If you succeed, you not only improve conversion from that particular user, but also get positive recommendations. On the other hand, a bad experience can result in almost 50% of users never returning to your store.
38. The probability of bounce increases by 32% if mobile page load time goes form 1 s to 3 s.
Slow loading of web pages is one of the biggest concerns of online shoppers considering that they are shopping on their phones primarily to save time. According to Google, a delay in load time of a mere 2 seconds can result in an increase by 32% in the bounce rate. These rates increase exponentially as the lag time grows.
39. 42% of shoppers have security concerns about shopping via smartphone.
(Source: Dynamic Yield)
Among the many reasons that make shoppers wary of spending money through their smartphones, mobile e-commerce stats show that one of the biggest is the issue of security. Having trusted badges like PayPal, Visa, Mastercard, and Google can help nullify some of these concerns.
40. 73% of shoppers use multiple channels to shop.
(Source: Harvard Business Review)
Interestingly, most online shoppers do not restrict their shopping to one type of device. To be truly successful in e-commerce, business owners need to provide a robust experience across channels, including in-store shopping.
41. Mobile drives or influences an average of over 40% of revenue in leading B2B organizations.
If the trend towards mobile transactions is encouraging for general consumers, it is even more eye-catching in the case of B2B commerce. According to smartphones statistics from a joint report by Google and the Boston Consulting Group, mobile already has a direct or indirect influence on more than 40% of revenues, and this share is growing.
42. 70% of B2B search queries are expected to come from smartphones in 2020.
One sign of this growing influence is that in 2020, about 70% of search queries in B2B e-commerce will originate on smartphones, up from about 50% in late 2017.
43. 90% of dating and social merchants support mobile commerce as a sales channel.
The adoption of m-commerce is not uniform across all sectors. Globally, m-commerce trends show that only half of the professional services industry has adopted this channel. This indicates a marked difference in preference and room for growth in certain segments.
44. Close to 80% of mobile search traffic gets routed through Google.
(Source: Net Market Share)
Baidu’s share is a little over 16%, with Yahoo and Bing scoring 0.94% and 0.81%, respectively. If you ignore the Chinese market, Google’s share goes up to the high 90s. So, ranking high on Google is still the best way to get new leads for your online store.
45. Mobile advertising is expected to represent 72% of all U.S. digital ad spending in 2019.
What is mobile commerce without mobile advertising? In keeping with the growing importance of mobile commerce, advertising on mobile devices is witnessing a phenomenal growth. It accounted for just 24.7% of total digital ad spending and a measly 6.3% of total media ad spending in 2013. Its share of total media ad spending will be 28.6% in 2019.
46. 40% of shoppers say they will buy a product if they get to experience it through augmented reality before they buy it.
61% of users prefer brands that make use of AR over those that don’t. 71% of shoppers feel greater loyalty towards apps that offer AR as well. The increasing use of AR was among the most prominent features of m-commerce statistics in 2019. Other key trends include single click payments, increased use of automation tools, greater personalization, and growing investment in beacons to monitor and understand consumer behavior.
47. Virtual reality/augmented reality markets will become independent $162B industries in 2020.
Virtual reality and augmented reality ads deliver immersive brand stories to consumers that are likely to be retained much longer. Technology has evolved to make production of such ads cheaper and accessible to businesses of all sizes. Reflecting the preference of consumers for AR, the industry will continue to see massive investment and drive growth in m-commerce.
48. 61% of mobile consumers are more likely to buy from mobile sites that customize information to location and preferences.
Online business owners have tons of tools at their disposal to offer a more personalized experience to their shoppers through mobile sites and apps. And your customers are aware of this. Offering local information or recommending additional products based on purchase history are some ways to make shoppers feel special.
49. Organizations are experiencing as high as 3x ROI for personalization efforts.
Personalization is not just a feel-good factor. M-commerce statistics prove that such efforts have objective, measurable benefits and can earn you as much as three times what you invest in setting up your mobile marketing systems.
50. 69% of mobile shoppers want easy answers to their questions.
Another key metric where online business owners can beat the competition (or lose out miserably) is whether the shopper gets clear and actionable information on their site or app. One of the top ways to take advantage of this is to ensure your products’ descriptions clearly explain the problem your products solve.