Online supermarket brand Ocado has revealed that a third of all its orders from customers take place on mobile apps, yet again underlining the need for businesses to have a good mobile experience to ensure maximum revenues.
The firm revealed the information as part of its half-year results for 2013, ending 19 May, where it reported a loss of £3.8m. It said this was due to costs linked to its distribution deal with supermarket chain Morrisons and the opening of new warehouses.
However, sales rose 15.6 percent to £355.9m, with the average order size up to £114.90. The mobile strategy for Ocado is clearly of importance in helping these sales rise, as apps for it service served up a significant chunk of its orders.
“We remain at the forefront of the mobile shopping trend, with over 30 percent of checkouts now across apps, and mobile checkouts across our website also continuing to grow strongly,” it said in the report on its sales.
The boost in mobile sales echoes similar trends seen by retailers such as Argos, Littlewoods and Debenhams, which are all pushing mobile as a key part of their future e-commerce offerings to offset the slump in high street sales.
Recent research from Deloitte has also shown how comfortable most consumers are using m-commerce apps, with half of all shoppers having bought products from a mobile app, while 57 percent have checked for stock using a mobile device, according to the consulting firm.
Scott Dacko, associate professor of strategic marketing and management at Warwick Business School, told V3 that the figures from Ocado should act as a wake-up call to other firms to see how they can benefit from the mobile revolution.
“With the rise of smartphones and tablets devices, there are going to be more on-the-go purchases by consumers. In many ways any company with more than one store is going to find it beneficial to offer this,” he said.
“Not only can this increase sales but it allows you to offer deals, provide information such as opening hours, and increase branding, and continue to engage with your customers.”
Dacko said that any apps have to be right first time in order to ensure they are actually used and user perception of the brand is a positive one.
“There are millions of apps for Apple and Android and most people uninstall anything if it doesn’t work on the first go and they will look at the ratings other users give the app, so it needs to work well the first time it’s used,” he said.
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