Global Mobile Trends to Watch

Any sized company can win BIG in e-commerce provided they are mobile-ready

Photo courtesy: Laurel Delaney

How are consumers and businesses alike looking to buy products and services today? That’s easy. With more than a third of global online transactions now mobile, three key trends have become explosive growth drivers. Here they are. Call it the Age of the Mobile Global Customer. 

1.  Global Mobile E-commerce

According to e-commerce player Shopify, “two thirds of all traffic to Shopify stores now come from a mobile phone or tablet, and we expect it to continue to grow over the coming year.” Yes, mobile’s purchase conversion rate is increasing, yet it is still below the conversion rate on desktop.

Shopify expects to see major improvements here, led by improved mobile operating systems, the use of popular apps like Facebook and the entry of Apple and Samsung to the payments market.

Here’s an interesting fact. Those e-commerce sites that store credit card information, such as Amazon, iTunes and Uber, can have a significant competitive e-commerce advantage. According to PwC Strategy&, “Issuers would be wise to create aggressive incentives for merchants to highlight their cards through cross promotion deals and increase their chances of becoming consumers’ primary card choice.” 

The bottom line: Consumers want an e-commerce experience that is accessible, secure, easy and fast. No ifs, ands or buts.

2.  Global Mobile Payments

Over the coming months, we’ll see more global mobile payment mechanisms scaling and going global in a far more efficient manner. For example, Global Payments recently announced that it is planning to buy Heartland Payment Systems, a rival payment processor for $4.3 billion in cash and stock.

According to Forrester, “the two companies’ combined will be the 6th largest U.S. payment acquirer based on card purchase volume and the largest U.S. acquirer based on active merchant locations.”

Apple Pay, for instance, claims to work at more than 2 million North American locations and is now entering more countries, with China in the works through its partnership with UnionPay,  so you’ll see explosive growth in app commerce this year.

 

While China’s third-party online payment platform Alipay and the United States’ PayPal will continue to lead remote payments for the foreseeable future, they are also expected to become serious contenders for in-store payments.

3.  Global Mobile Messaging Apps

For those who still think messaging apps – Facebook’s messenger WhatsApp and SnapChat – are only for the young and the restless, guess again. We're seeing a big shift from using messaging apps for chatting to using messaging apps for buying. 

TradeUp Founder and CEO Kati Suominen recently participated at the World Economic Forum in Davos, participating in a keynote discussion on the top trends to watch out for in the evolving app economy. According to TradeUp, Suominen said, “… ‘never in human history has it been as possible for even the smallest companies to scale globally, raise capital, and tap talent’. She highlighted opportunities for companies big and small to unlock key sources of growth - company-wide digitization initiatives to create new efficiencies, use of mobile technologies to reach B2C and B2B markets worldwide, and public policy initiatives to harness global digital dividends - end digital protectionism and bridge global digital divides.” 

Lastly, you don’t need to be a rocket scientist to figure this one out. Partnerships between major participants in the global payments industry will largely impact the direction in which the global mobile payments market will evolve. Further, watch for the emergence of one-touch checkout buttons that will create new opportunities for remote mobile payments. Stay tuned and ready your business for global mobile growth!