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With more and more people going online to complete their purchases and transactions, mobile commerce is on the rise. A subset of ecommerce which specifically refers to commerce that occurs using mobile devices, mobile commerce, or m-commerce is often confused with ecommerce more broadly.
In this post, we’ll clearly define what mobile commerce entails, the types of mobile commerce there are, as well as discussing the advantages it can offer merchants.
What is mobile commerce?
Mobile commerce, or m-commerce, refers to the use of devices, such as mobile phones and tablets, to complete commercial transactions online. This includes online banking, paying bills and purchasing products and services.
Mobile commerce is a subdivision of electronic commerce, or ecommerce. Electronic, or e, just means that it refers to business which is conducted over the internet.
M-commerce comprises a number of services, including the purchasing of items, travel tickets, non-fungible tokens, investing and banking.
As more and more people rely on their phones and transportable devices to carry out transactions, m-commerce has become more and more popular. And, alongside its growth as a commerce type, there have been numerous innovations in how it’s conducted, from optimised user experience to heightened security measures.
M-commerce vs. ecommerce
Electronic commerce, or ecommerce, involves the purchasing and selling of products and services online. It might be carried out using a desktop computer, a portable laptop, a mobile phone, a smartwatch or a tablet. However, it is probably most associated with a traditional computer connected to Wi-Fi.
M-commerce, meanwhile, more specifically refers to any transactions carried out using a mobile device, i.e. a smartphone or tablet. This means it can be conducted anywhere via Wi-Fi or mobile data.
Generally speaking, m-commerce is quicker than other types of ecommerce and can be completed with just a few clicks.
Advantages of mobile commerce
The rise of mobile commerce isn’t just more convenient for shoppers, it also poses a number of benefits for businesses. Some of the main advantages are outlined below:
As customers have easier access than ever to online shops and businesses, the opportunities for merchants to obtain sales increases.
Plus, with the wide availability of digital wallets tailored to ecommerce, like Apple Pay and Google Pay, customers are able to conveniently make purchases wherever they are.
Social media platforms, like Instagram, which are often viewed on mobile devices, also have follow through links to buy products featured in posts. This opens up huge marketing opportunities for businesses.
Overall, the portability of mobile devices allows businesses to extend their influence and reach via mobile commerce.
Mobile commerce apps have the option for location tracking via GPS. This can help customers locate items near them for click and collect, or in-store shopping.
M-commerce apps also come with enhanced security measures, including biometric authorisation and multi-factor authentication processes.
How to optimise your mobile commerce presence
M-commerce presents a lot of opportunities for businesses. However, there are certain ways to optimise the experience for users and secure more conversions. Some of these are outlined below:
Fast loading pages
Shoppers, and internet users generally, tend to be less patient when accessing online pages on their mobile devices. Make sure your ecommerce site presents well in a mobile format and is quick to load.
Make payment easy
Ensure too that it’s quick and easy for buyers to enter their payment and delivery information, and include options for autofill and mobile wallet payments to reduce manual entry requirements. This makes the process faster, but also eliminates opportunities for human error leading to failed payments.
Pay links can also be a quick and efficient way to collect payments from customers. This involves customers being sent a link which leads them to a payment portal where they can pay. In the UK and Germany, GoCardless offers Instant Bank Pay. This solution allows merchants to send links to customers in order to receive on-off payments.
Using videos to show your products clearly to customers can help attract buyer attention, and also make them more susceptible to making a purchase.
We can help
GoCardless is a global payments solution that helps you automate payment collection, cutting down on the amount of financial admin your team needs to deal with. Find out how GoCardless can help you with one-off or recurring payments.