Mobile purchases are “surging to new heights”, according to Javelin Research. The firm’s latest report says that such purchases, whether made through browsers or apps, reached a value of $120 billion last year, reflecting growth of 60 percent over 2014.
The findings are based on online surveys of about 3,200 respondents last fall and summer, and in the summer of 2014. According to Javelin, mobile devices are quickly outpacing PCs in driving online retail, thanks in part to increasing use of smartphones in general. And that conclusion tracks very well with recent findings from the GSMA, which recently issued its first annual Global Mobile Trends report.
There are some obstacles to growth in mobile purchases, however—namely, the user experience. In a report synopsis, Javelin asserts that “[t]oo many merchants… still offer experiences that are optimized for larger screens and that fail to meet consumers’ expectations for speedy checkout and payment options.” Indeed, it’s exactly that kind of friction that has helped to drive the adoption of authentication solutions that leverage technologies like biometrics in order to smooth out the checkout process, as illustrated in Apple’s use of Touch ID fingerprint scanning for Apple Pay purchases.
Companies will continue to embrace such solutions going forward, of course, and Javelin predicts that by 2020 the mobile retail market will grow to reach a value of $320 billion.