Mcommerce Explained

Ecommerce By Rhys Little, 7th May 2014

Just when you had got used to all the ‘E’ words relating to our online and digital activities: Email, Ebay, Ecommerce, Etc, a new buzzword appears and will, I’m sure give rise to a whole new breed of worldwide vocabulary…


The new breed of popular words will now all begin with M, so what does it mean, and why do we need it? The M stands for Mobile, so Mcommerce means everything you buy using a mobile device. Whether you use a Smartphone, Tablet, or ipad; it describes the new modern consumerism method of buying products and services while we are ‘on the move’ and represents a dramatic change in popular shopping habits which has been growing in the last few years. It doesn’t just refer to ‘Shopaholics either, it can be buying a Kindle book after a conversation with some friends, or just ordering in a Pizza for tea.

 Is Ecommerce dead?

Not at all, Ecommerce is now used as a business term, for a process that any business can ‘do’ to sell their products and services. Ecommerce requires a very professional website, that will be able to deduct stock, add up purchases, enable customers to search for products, add them to ‘E-shopping carts’ and then be able to take our money from us in a variety of different ways. The Selling end of the supply and demand chain and none of this has changed at all. The new ‘M’ word refers specifically to the person doing the buying, and tells us that they are making their purchases via a mobile device; and not from their desktop or Laptop computers.

Closing Time is Gone For Ever:

Do you remember the times, when you would have to take a day off to go to the High Street for that new purchase? Or wait until Saturday to go to the Shopping Centre?  That was replaced by the Lunch break shoppers, using their work computers to do the Food Shop – arranging delivery for half an hour after they get home, or ordering their travel tickets, Festival tickets, and booking their holidays online in the evenings. Well now there is a new level of online purchasing, the anytime, anyplace, anywhere shopping, where, as long as you have a Smartphone and a Wi-Fi signal, you can order your Indian Takeaway on the train 20 minutes before you pull in, so you can collect it without waiting and drive away. Or finish a phone call with a friend who tells you about a brilliant new band, or book; and you can click into Amazon and buy it there and then, without needing to write it down and wait until you next surf the web.

Mcommerce will double by 2015:

In just twenty years, smartphones have hit their ‘one billion status’, but with accessibility to mobile devices and smartphone technology improving almost daily, predictions tell us that this will reach two billion by 2015[1].

While mobiles continue to get smarter, it’s tablets that are becoming the preferred choice for retail consumers. Data from Adobe Digital Marketing Insights[2] found that tablet users spend 50 percent more money online, when compared to shopping on a smartphone. This is probably because the larger screens and touch interfaces give us a much better shopping experience, so you can now look round your favourite shop online, while you are watching TV, and look at the products from all angles, zooming in to the detail views on a tablet. It’s easy to hold, lightweight and easier to use than having a laptop open on your lap, complete with dangling wires. You can pass it round the family with one hand and you don’t even have to miss the end of your programme to go into the ‘home-office’ to boot up the Laptop or Desktop.

Tablets will soon replace the Newspaper at the breakfast table – if they haven’t already. It’s because of this, Goldman Sachs[3] believe that Mcommerce sales will more than quadruple by 2018. In a forecast released in March, they estimate that global Mcommerce sales will rise from $133 billion last year to $626 billion in the next four years.

What’s In It for Me?

If you have a Smartphone, tablet or other mobile device, the world has just become your oyster. You have not only the local Shopping Centre at your beck and call, but you also have any transaction or facilitation of business you wish to make through mobile device. Mcommerce really is for you, your family members, and friends.

If you have a business that trades online, then you should take note of how Mcommerce could increase your enquiries, your sales and your client base. You could use it to capture contact information and find out what your customers really do want to buy. Your local hair salon could make use of Mcommerce with their customers booking appointments online, for an appointment the next day, instead of hoping that clients phone them tomorrow, during opening hours. Mcommerce can generate more revenue for any business, if you know how to utilise it, and have a website that can deal with it.

mobile infographic

Amazon was of the first brands that saw the potential for Mcommerce. Because of Amazon’s good reputation in the marketplace, it has become extremely successful using it. Amazon has added features to its mobile optimised website such as easy repeat purchases with a one click payment method. Saving the customers’ delivery address and card details, means a faster sign-in method using only a username and password. Entering card details on a mobile every time you buy one item, can be time wasting and an instant turn off. Amazons’ main focus is optimising the experience so that customers will not abandon their shopping cart.

amazon chart

In 2011 Amazon introduced a subscription service where customers pay a flat annual fee, to receive perks such as free shipping and, later added, instant streaming. The Morningstar chart[4] above shows that in 2013, once the Kindle Fire launched, memberships rapidly increased as Amazon were offering a one month free trial on Prime, to anyone that purchased a Kindle. Memberships rose by millions as consumers enjoying the experience of using Mcommerce on their new tablets, as it was more convenient and accessible for them.

So our view is, that Mcommerce has changed the way your customers make their purchases,  and it could be the right time for your business to change the way you make your sales!….