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BizReport : Ecommerce archives : August 09, 2011

$1 in $10 spent online, how merchants can capitalize

With back-to-school shopping in full swing, merchants are finding more consumers connecting to them through online and mobile channels. Many of these consumers are buying online, but even those who research online and buy in-store offer a wealth of information to merchants. Here's how merchants can turn back-to-school lessons into a profitable holiday shopping season.

by Kristina Knight

"While back-to-school is critical, when was the last time you heard about a massive site issue in August?" said Geoff Galat, Vice President, Worldwide Marketing, Tealeaf. "But on Cyber Monday? Black Friday? The heightened interest but lower focus allows retailers to learn, plan and prepare for the coming holiday season, where mCommerce might double or triple the same period last year."

New data from comScore shows US ecommerce spending reached more than $37 billion for Q2 2011, an increase of 14% Year over Year. As we move into back-to-school buying, the precursor to the holiday buying frenzy, that is good news, indeed. Most online shoppers are focused on Consumer Electronics, Hardware/Software and Event Tickets, but clothing/apparel, shoes and books are also high on shoppers lists.

"E-commerce's benefits of convenience and lower prices continue to be the drivers of the shift. At the same time, we are constantly reminded of an overall macroeconomic situation that is not indicative of a strong recovery," said Gian Fulgoni, comScore Chairman. "With economic growth remaining soft, the unemployment rate stubbornly high and financial markets in turmoil. . .[we] believe the third quarter will be an important indicator of which direction this economy is really headed and what that will mean for consumer spending."

According to Tealeaf's Geoff Galat, mobile is becoming key to an ecommerce strategy because consumers are increasingly connecting via mobile device. Galat says mobile strategy, simplicity and visibility are the key factors in winning over repeat buyers.

"You can't manage what you can't measure and you can't measure what you can't see," said Galat. "Mobile changes the way the companies can understand user behavior, success and failure." His keys? Create a mobile strategy aligned with the online and in-store aspects of your business; this makes it beneficial to the consumer. And, make it simple by using the most relevant content, products or information on mobile devices rather than creating a huge mobile site that isn't functional to the consumer.

Tags: comScore, ecommerce, m:commerce, mobile shopping, online shopping, online shopping spend, shopping trends, Tealeaf

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