Online consumers still prefer desktops for internet purchases, says Adobe

Online consumers are shifting to mobile but still prefer their desktop computers for making online purchases Adobe’s ‘Best of the Best’ report has found.

The report analysed over a hundred billion data points collected during 2016 and found the best online marketers were widening their lead over the rest of the pack while consumers are changing their browsing habits as they shift to smartphones.

“We know consumers are coming in on a smartphone more often but what we’re seeing is almost every single country is seeing a decrease in visit rates on smartphones,” Becky Tasker, Adobe Digital Insight’s senior managing analyst, told Mumbrella.

“There’s an implication that as your traffic shifts on smartphones, you have to find a way to get them to come back or else a competitor is going to find a way to attract them.”

Desktop users still lead mobile in website visits, Adobe found, with a 52.5% share of browser traffic compared to 37.7%, but conversion rates on desktops at 2.9% of visits were three times that of smartphones with 0.8%.

“A smartphone session lasts around 59% of a desktop so as people are switching to smartphones they are inherently behaving differently,” said Tasker.

Good user experience is essential for sites wanting to retain visitors advised Adobe’s president for Asia Pacific, Paul Robson: “If the experience is great, then people will go all the way to a transaction. If the experience starts to wane, then there’ll be abandonment.”

“The brands who have got great experiences are pulling away from those who don’t and the expectations of the consumer in a great online experience has never been higher and the lack of patience in a poor online experience has never been lower,” Robson observed.

Industries doing best with their online strategies are typically those with the highest cost to acquire and easiest for consumers to churn, observed Robson. Across all measures and categories the survey found the gap between the leading 20% and the average was growing.

An example of that growing gap was user stickiness – the percentage of visitors who stay around for more than one page – where despite an overall decline thanks to the shift to mobile, the top performers are outperforming the average by 53%.

Online advertising still offers better value in the Asia Pacific than the United States observed Tasker.

Adobe’s Becky Tasker

“What we’re seeing with firms who invest in paid search over the last couple of years is they have increased their spend by 42% but they’ve only seen an increase of 11% of traffic whereas if you’re looking a Asia Pacific, they’ve increased their spend by 6% but they’ve increased traffic by over 30%.”

Despite the relatively good news Tasker warns that today’s top sites may face challenges once consumers fully make the transition to mobile.

“Even though we’re calling it the top 20 here, these are sites seeing most of their traffic coming through the desktop,” she said. “These ones have to be careful because as their consumers and industries are moving away from their desktop they are kind of stuck in the stone age.

“This research illustrates how ‘Best of the Best’ websites have a clear advantage over the competition. With the increasing complexity of the customer journey, a commitment to digital excellence helps marketers create satisfied customers, who in turn generate a significant increase in revenue,” Tasker concluded.


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