Online shoppers placed 25% of their December orders via smartphones or tablets, the mobile peak for 2015, but a record that will be quickly eclipsed in 2016, according to a survey from Bizrate Insights, a division of retail marketing vendor Connexity (formerly Shopzilla).  By November 2016, 42% of e-commerce purchases will come from mobile devices, Bizrate Insights says.

Bizrate Insights collected this data from consumers who made more than 540 million online purchases from more than 5,000 e-commerce retailers in the U.S. and Canada between July 1, 2013 and Dec. 13, 2015. These mobile purchases are only from websites, and the data and projections do not include in-app purchases. Bizrate does not have data on in-app purchases.

“Considering the percentage of mobile website purchases projected for 2016, focusing exclusively on your in-app experience may alienate new visitors, thwart conversion or damage your brand,” says Hayley Silver, vice president at Bizrate Insights.

Instead, Silver suggests retailers prioritize making it easy for consumers to shop their websites via mobile devices over making changes to desktops and apps in 2016. For example, retailers shouldn’t focus only on their app at the expense of their mobile site.

“As consumers move away from desktop to mobile for access to the web, retailers need to assure that their shopping experience is as good if not better than on desktop,” she says. “Given the size of the screens involved and page sequencing, retailers might want to make the search and checkout processes as quick and simple for the mobile user, perhaps moving to the one-click model if they can.”

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In Q1 of 2015, online orders placed on smartphones for the first time surpassed orders placed on  tablets, according to Bizrate Insights. The vendor predicts smartphones will continue to outpace tablets in 2016, with a third of all online orders coming from smartphones by  November 2016, with only 9% of online orders coming from tablets. (Combined, orders on mobile devices will comprise  42% of online orders, Bizrate Insights projects.)

The study found, however, that when mobile purchases are separated by device, more purchases were made on an iPad in 2015 than any other mobile device, iPhones and Android smartphones. In December 2015, 8% of mobile purchases were made on an iPad, 6% via iPhone and 5.5% on Android smartphones. The remaining mobile sales were made on other mobile devices.

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