Mobile-Ready Retailers Win Black Friday 2016

There’s no doubt that mobile won Black Friday in terms of traffic, accounting for more than desktop traffic over the shopping weekend. Mobile conversions and revenue were a slightly different story.

While the majority of retailers didn’t report an increase in conversion rates, mobile-ready retailers turned mobile traffic into sales and saw conversion rates grow above 2015.

We gathered the Black Friday results from Mobify customers to determine what factors are giving some retailers their edge.

Mobile Conversion Rates Increased Over Black Friday

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Mobile conversion rates over the 2016 Black Friday weekend were up from last year, while desktop and tablet saw no change.

Mobify customers saw a 9.6% increase in their mobile conversion rates year-over-year (controlled for natural mobile growth), but the majority of the retail industry has yet to see mobile conversions increase to match that growth. The gap represents a big opportunity and retailers that offer a mobile experience on par with tech leaders like Amazon and Facebook are poised to capitalize on the growth in mobile commerce.

Customers want a fast, engaging experience that allows them to quickly find what they’re looking for and make a purchase. This used to be a tall order on mobile web, but with Google-pioneered Progressive Web Apps, it’s now possible to create app-like experiences. It’s clear from these Black Friday results that brands offering app-like experiences on the web are converting mobile traffic into sales.

Mobile Customers Shopping Before Turkey Dinner

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As mobile shopping becomes easier and more fun, consumers are turning to their phones to take advantage of Black Friday deals before they even have turkey dinner. Savvy retailers know this and start early with compelling offers. As a result, dollars per session on mobile doubled the Tuesday prior to the holiday weekend, and Wednesday saw 30% more dollars per session compared to last year. Both days also saw higher conversion rates and more orders.

A mobile-first experience is built for the mobile shopper. Seems obvious, right? But a lot of brands still don’t consider the shopping context when developing their mobile web experience. These shoppers are on-the-go, so you need to make it easy and fast for them to finish their purchase before they get interrupted by their bus arriving, the start of their meeting, or a text from a friend.

Recommending products based on past customer behavior, sending notifications with relevant discounts, and providing app-like navigation that makes it easy to continue shopping all add to increased dollars per session.

Mobify customers saw their shoppers spending more before Black Friday because their mobile experiences facilitated easy on-the-go shopping before sales hit the stores. Why go to a chaotic store on your day off when you can get the deals online ahead of time and avoid the masses?

Cyber Monday is Still King Online

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Not surprisingly, Cyber Monday beat out Black Friday in terms of total online revenue – with 29% coming from mobile, 11% from tablet, and 60% from desktop.

Retailers run online campaigns urging shoppers to finish their last minute shopping before the deals end. Email is a big driver of these online sales. Since 66% of emails are opened on mobile, offering a mobile-optimized shopping experience after the click through will turn that traffic into revenue.

Knowing that emails are a noisy channel on a good day (let alone Cyber Monday), savvy retailers also turned to web push notifications to drive sales. These timely, contextual notifications are perfect to drive urgency on limited time offers like Cyber Monday.

Consumers are ready to shop on mobile. They are turning to their mobile devices more often than desktop, and retailers who offer an experience that meets their expectations will convert those visits into sales – not just on Black Friday, but everyday.

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