The concept of now & the rise of mCommerce

The technological leaps over the past few years are indisputable. Unbelievable, even. Others simply refuse to believe how far we’ve come.

I was at my Grandma’s house the other day and we were discussing technology – TVs in particular – and I go, “Hey gran, can you believe that 8K TV’s, are up to around 33 Million pixels, can you believe it?”

I honestly don’t know what I was thinking because the two responses that followed were a bewildered: “No.” and “What are pixels?

Granted, my audience was… let’s say... less than ideal to engage with the topic  – but we trudged on regardless, and we ended up discussing I ended up explaining certain advancements in the industry that I, myself, struggle to believe sometimes.

These advancements in tech are omnipresently evident in the physical goodies we can’t seem to live without — but an area that is less prevalent in our day-to-day, and has made leaps and bounds of progress, has to do with eCommerce & more specifically, what we are now calling mCommerce.

What’s the difference between the two, you ask?

The simple answer: Not much. Not much at all.

For the most part, mCommerce is a natural progression of the eCommerce ecosystem and is generally seen as any monetary transaction that is completed using a mobile device.

mCommerce allows people to buy/sell goods or services anywhere, anytime. And the strength & empowerment that comes with that is the pure, single-most strength that this ecosystem now provides.

The rise of mobile commerce is unprecedented. To give you a better image, it has surpassed previous forecasts for 2021 not once, but two times already this year alone.

At the start of the year mCommerce was expected to make up 54% of total eCommerce sales. Now, in a report published around a month ago, it is expected that by the end of 2021, 72.9% of eCommerce sales will be attributed to mCommerce use.

Strictly speaking, mCommerce use falls under 3 general categories:

  1. Mobile Shopping
  2. Mobile Banking
  3. Mobile Payments

To add further specificity, this use (& mCommerce use in general) is related to these types of transactions. Not only that, it has also helped usher in new industries and services as well as allow existing ones to develop further:

  • Mobile money transfers
  • Mobile marketing / services
  • Location based (Geo-location) services
  • Contactless payments & in-app purchases
  • Microtransactions
  • Digital content purchases & delivery
  • Electronic tickets & travel cards/passes

Think of the effect that services like Apple Pay and Google Pay for example, have had on your everyday life. Half of us are now using our phones for something as trivial as our daily commute.

It almost seems unreal. Just take your phone out of your pocket and ‘Phwoosh’, simply slide it over the gate scanner and just like that, your morning commute has now become digitised. True story.

The mCommerce boom comes as no surprise when you consider that 67% of the global population owns a mobile phone or tablet in 2021.

To give you more of those sweet juicy stats you all love, it is expected that mCommerce sales will reach $3.56 trillion by the end of 2021, with mobile activity accounting for 67.2% of all eCommerce.

The mobile wallet market alone is expected to reach $3.5 trillion in 2023 and judging from this year’s forecasts, I predict that number will be much higher in reality.

The numbers don’t lie and are a key factor in the rapid adoption of mCommerce as the de facto ‘E-Transaction’ solution. Though, growth potential aside, lies the fact that this transition has a huge number of advantages with very few, very trivial barriers to incorporation.

Augmented reality, for example, is quickly becoming more widespread in its implementation towards consumers. Companies like IKEA allow you to set up and view their catalogue in your own space, simply by using your phone’s camera.

Chatbots & messenger apps are now being adopted by a number of different sectors, which, engagement aside, I feel is solely linked to the concept of, ‘now.

This ‘Now’ mindset is a sociotechnological concept, created by the current generation of impatience. Yet this newly created culture doesn’t surprise me in the slightest. It is simply the byproduct of Mobile devices and the ability of instant access to information.

Everything has now become, I guess you could say, instant-ised, and these methods sort of act as a pseudo-solution to the consumer/user attention span problem. Though frankly, I see this as more of a stepping stone. I have a feeling that this system will evolve into something much more effective and meaningful in the coming years, possibly with the help of machine learning and artificial intelligence.

Because of this novelty, the mCommerce ecosystem comes with its own set of challenges, which, I feel are for the most part simply related to optimisation. Rather, the constant need for optimisation., which brings challenges to an already established way of thinking – and even now, we still have a lot to figure out.

The biggest challenge here is moving away from the eCommerce mindset and changing the way you think. This fluidity is integral to implementing a true omni-channel experience, which is the ultimate strength of mCommerce.

I find that one of the largest factors attributed to the growth of mCommerce stems from the omnipresence of the eCommerce ecosystem. The fact that more and more users are flocking towards mobile is the unparalleled ease-of-use, or rather, ease of information.

What I’m referring to is the all-around presence of both online and offline channels. Being everywhere and allowing your users to access information about your company, your products, your discounts, everything.

It’s important to list your products and be active wherever customers are already spending their time, which is what we call, contextual commerce.

Omni-channel means no (customer) doubt. By being everywhere – especially where your customers are – and making it possible to buy what they want. Now.

Setting up a true omni-channel solution can be incredibly taxing however, but luckily, services such as EshopswithIQ, allow you to streamline this process & become even more effective in your marketing strategy.

The concept of now & the rise of mCommerce