March 6th, 2014. Posted by Alexcowell
Back in October, as an eager audience was gathering in sunny California to hear Apple announce the launch of the new generation iPad, we wrote a blog post on the growing availability of the tablet as ‘tablet fever’ struck on a global scale. Now, with fresh data available from Q4 2013, beginning to take tablet user experience seriously could not be more important as users of these devices prove to be converting at a higher rate than mobile and desktop.
From the bargain Lifetab (£80), released by budget superstore Aldi, to the mother of all tablets, Apple’s iPad Air (ranging anywhere between £399-£739), the recent drop in price at the lower end of the tablet market means that tablets have become more accessible and thus more of a normality.
Early adopters of the tablet tended to be financially better off, using their tablet as a complementary browsing device, second to their desktop. However, with a variety of differing priced tablets now existing in the market, the tablet demographic has expanded, which has seen these devices morph into a primary browsing device.
Tablets are expected to outsell desktops this year, suggesting that more households will be ‘shopping from the sofa’. Therefore you should feel ‘behind with the times’ if your website does not offer a great tablet experience.
As 2014 gets into full swing, IBM has revealed data on our online shopping habits over the 2013 Christmas period. Their data suggests that the practicality of having your smartphone to hand, to constantly whip out of your pocket, made smartphones the primary device for researching on the web across the festive period, with 21.3% of Q4 shopping traffic coming from smartphones.
However, IBM’s data unveils that tablets were our device of choice when it came to completing those all-important transactions, with 11.5% of online sales being completed on tablets compared to a mere 5% on smartphones. (This also means we need to make sure we’re tracking multi-channel buying journeys, so we can understand better how our customers switch between devices.)
The ease of shopping from the sofa (or wherever you can get a stable enough mobile/wifi connection) means that tablets are converting at a slightly higher rate than desktops and mobiles – Monetate’s latest quarterly report shows that 2.6% of conversions take place on iPads, while desktops convert slightly lower at 2.56%. While this may appear insignificant, even a small difference can equate to a significant amount of online revenue for your business.
As a result, specifically monitoring your current tablet conversion rate and delivering optimal tablet usability should be a priority, if it is not already, to ensure you are squeezing the maximum possible revenue out of your ecommerce site.