Optimizing ecommerce sites for mobile engagement

For any ecommerce merchant looking to expand his or her business in the coming years, accounting for mobile devices is essential since more people are using smartphones and tablets than ever before. A recent study conducted by Javelin Strategy & Research concluded that tablet adoption rates alone are expected to increase 40 percent by 2016, reported ZDNet. It is not just the growing number of mobile device users that ecommerce businesses should be paying attention to, but their greater customer value. According to a report released by nonprofit group IAB, consumers who used their smartphones were 22 percent more likely to make an unplanned purchase when shopping online. In order to take advantage of these trends, online merchants need to ensure that their digital storefronts are compatible with mobile devices.

E-Commerce Times recently proposed several methods by which online businesses could enhance their mobile compatibility. The key to optimizing this task is by stressing the end user experience. For instance, the news source suggested weighing the value of third-party plug-ins and applications present on ecommerce software that may significantly degrade the site's performance. If the presence of overly intensive applications are weighing down a site's functionality and making navigation with a mobile device difficult, an ecommerce business may want to consider scaling back those processes.

Optimizing an ecommerce website's design for mobile device browsing is essential for appealing to this growing demographic. The difficulty with creating a website around mobile hardware is the wide range of devices out there. Tablets allow for a great visual field than smaller smartphones. Making a strong push to appeal to tablet owners may discourage smartphone users and vice versa. Regardless of the specific platform, the mobile trend has not shown any sign of waning, so ecommerce merchants should take steps to appeal to this burgeoning user base.

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