Tablet traffic has overtaken mobile traffic, according to a new report titled “The Impact of Tablet for Retailers 2012” from Skava, a provider of multi-touch point retail technology. Today, 12 percent of the U.S. population, equating to 28 million consumers, own a tablet device, and tablet ownership is growing 50 percent year on year. Forrester anticipates that by 2015, one in three U.S. adults will own a tablet. Still, only 7 percent of retailers have created a tablet website, while 95 percent of retailer’s ecommerce sites are optimized for smartphones. This may be counterproductive, considering that a tablet shopper is almost four times more likely to purchase goods online than a smartphone shopper—2.3 percent for tablet compared to 0.6 percent for smartphone visitors. Furthermore, tablet shoppers and mobile shoppers are different. The mobile shopper is usually on the go and using a mobile website to browse product selection before visiting a store. Store locators are one of the most commonly used features of a mobile shopper. Tablet users spend an average of 90 minutes a day browsing in a relaxed environment, such as their couch, where they are primed to leisurely browse sites and make purchases. A tablet shopper is more affluent and spends more money per transaction than other users. Average order value by mobile device is $80 compared to $123 by tablet.
Some of the common stumbling blocks tablet consumers experience with retail websites are that they are not optimized to switch between landscape and portrait, images don’t work correctly and text is too small. Sites that are optimized for tablet create an exciting experience for shoppers. Skava suggests online sellers be aware of the following:
- Think BIG—big buttons, big navigation menus, big pictures and big text create an engaging user experience.
- Customers have expectations of how to flow through a website—they love side-to-side swiping of pages.
- Flash and iPad don’t mix.
- Make sure links work.
Tablet shoppers are a valuable consumer to retailers, and to neglect their user experience is to forgo a revenue stream. A rich, exciting tablet experience creates a real opportunity to capture the hearts and minds of influential buyers.