Customers Have More Ways to Shop On-the-Go Than Ever

John Krautzel
Posted by

With the growing popularity of mobile devices, such as smartphones, tablets and lighter, thinner portable computers, mobile shopping is booming. Customers on the go have more shopping options than ever, and they use those options in increasingly diverse ways. E-commerce trends predict a continued growth in mobile shopping to meet consumer needs.

E-commerce trends are moving far past online shopping's humble roots of browsing a dedicated online retail shop and making a purchase. Contemporary shoppers want choices, and tech-savvy retailers are rushing to boost the versatility of mobile shopping applications. The best shopping apps start with multiple formhats for comfortable browsing on any size device. Mobile-friendly websites are designed to look great on smaller smartphone screens and make selecting easy through a touch screen. Apps are customized to look great on all major device operating systems, including iOS, Android and Windows. Savvy shoppers quickly lose patience with slow or sloppy shopping sites.

The popularity of tablets is further increasing mobile shopping possibilities. Tablets feature bigger screens than cellphones and more portability than laptops. They offer quality graphics, which make online shopping fun and easy anywhere. Great tablet shopping apps encourage product browsing in the waiting room or during commutes with easy-to-navigate menus and detailed product photos and descriptions. Buying is easy and requires only a few clicks to encourage purchases.

The best mobile shopping apps offer extras that go beyond what a customer expects during a traditional shopping excursion. For example, many apps allow easy price comparisons with competing retailers. Other apps feature augmented reality options. With this feature, the shopper takes and uploads a quick snapshot of herself. Then she adds layers to try on different products, such as make up, clothing or accessories. The shopper mixes and matches different combinations to see which products work well together.

Shopping on the go gives shoppers the opportunity to combine the best attributes of online shopping and in store shopping. Many retailers offer shoppers the option of buying on their cellphones and picking up their purchases at a local retail store whenever it is convenient for them. This gives shoppers quicker access to their purchases, reduces or eliminates shipping costs, and allows shoppers to avoid browsing crowded stores. It also gives shoppers access to more color, style and size choices because they are not limited to those items the local store stocks. Local stores have the advantage of more sales to a more diverse clientele without the need to carry more stock.

Active consumers expect retailers to offer mobile shopping apps with multiple features. Retailers looking to attract mobile consumers need to offer easy-to-use mobile shopping sites that are optimized for multiple devices. Sites with extra features, such as price comparison or augmented reality, encourage customers to shop longer and make better decisions for more sales for retail businesses.


(Photo courtesy of Stuart Miles /


Become a member to take advantage of more features, like commenting and voting.

Jobs to Watch