« Peeling the onion on eBay's 2012 Q4 Results (from a seller's perspective) | Main | Holiday Lessons Learned Blog Series: Part 1 Overall and Mobile »

January 17, 2013

Attracting and Engaging Tablet shoppers

We've all heard about the rise of tablets in e-commerce. Many retailers have included tablets as a component of their mobile strategy. But how “mobile” are these devices really?

The myth of the mobile tablet

Recent research has shown that in fact, a lot of tablet shopping takes place while at home. This usage spikes during "prime time" hours, meaning this may be incremental usage that does not detract from hours otherwise spent in front of a PC. 

  • #1 place the tablet is used is the living room Couch Commerce
  • #2 is the bedroom
  • #3 is in airports / airplanes

source: Forrester-Bizrate Insights Flash Survey, Q3 2012

The first two locations are not only stationary locations, but also areas a consumer would consider their comfort zone, perfectly suited for extended shopping sessions.

Airports and airplanes, while not exactly a comfort zone, are places where people typically have lots of spare time, also encouraging a longer shopping experience.

Encourage extended site visits

In order to capture and keep the attention of these shoppers, it’s important to provide a good experience. Ask yourself these questions:

  • Is your site easily navigated on a tablet?
    • Do all features work?
    • Is checkout as simple as it can be?
    • Are images a key component of your site layout and fully visible without a lot of pinching and zooming?
    • Does your site encourage staying for reasons other than traditional shopping?
      • Examples of this might be featured videos, blogs, contests and other types of consumable content.

Embrace the tablet e-commerce ecosystem

Multichannel e-commerce includes players with a very broad reach. Make sure that your products are visible within the tablet and mobile experiences these major sites have to offer: Ebay-logo-new

  • eBay maintains mobile applications for each major platform with over 100 million downloads as of Q3 2012
  • Mobile revenue is forecasted at $10 billion in 2012 (actual revenue statistics are not available until the Q4 results report).
  • That's about 16 percent of eBay total revenues for 2012. This makes a compelling case that every online retailer should consider.
  • By including eBay in your e-commerce strategy you have access to this base of mobile and tablet consumers.


  • Amazon also provides a highly optimized tablet and mobile shopping experience with access to their base of 188 million shoppers.
  • Analysts suggest that Amazon is generating around $5 billion in sales from tablet and mobile devices; about 8 percent of annual sales.
  • While this is behind eBay's results its still quite an impressive amount and should also be considered as part of a complete mobile strategy.

source: AllThingsD article 1, article 2 


We hope this has provided some food for thought. The growth of tablets and their role for consumers has certainly seen unbelievably rapid growth that only seems to be picking up in pace as time moves on. It’s important for every retailer to look at their plans for 2013 and keep in mind that this is a significant opportunity for capturing market share from those slower to adapt.

  • Remember that tablet shoppers are looking for leisure and provide them that experience, give them reasons to stay, and return often.
  • Design your site features with these shoppers in mind. Many organizations find that designing for tablets first leads to good results on desktops too.
  • If you aren't leveraging marketplaces today, keep in mind that they have a huge tablet audience and can provide you with access to these shoppers that you might not otherwise reach.

 Blog post by David Monterroso, ChannelAdvisor Senior Solution Consultant

Ebook-retailer-guide-mobileThis eBook explains the mobile commerce opportunities available across every channel. The data in the Retailer's Guide to Mobile outlines how to:

  • Maximize multichannel revenues 

  • Create the best mobile experience possible 

  • Improve sales conversions


blog comments powered by Disqus